Port Elizabeth - The policeman shot and killed in Kinkelbos, near Port Elizabeth, was identified as Sergeant Thembile Gulwa by Eastern Cape police on Monday.
“Sergeant Gulwa will forever be remembered and honoured for paying the highest price in service of our nation,” Brigadier Marinda Mills said.
The 58-year-old officer was shot dead early on Sunday morning when he responded to a call for back up from another policeman chasing a Corsa bakkie on the N2. A man was arrested in connection with the murder.
The speeding bakkie, which had two people inside and five on the back, was pulled over and the driver got out to speak to the police. At this point, Gulwa and Warrant Officer Jaques Nell arrived to provide back up.
“Both Warrant Officer Nell and Sergeant Gulwa got out of their vehicle and proceeded towards the bakkie. The next moment shots were fired at the approaching police members, from the bakkie,” Mills said.
Gulwa was shot in the head and Nell wounded in his right shoulder. Nell had since been discharged from hospital.
The driver of the Corsa bakkie got back into his vehicle and sped off.
Forty minutes later the bakkie was found in a bushy area. A firearm and ammunition were found in the back.
“Police also took three possible suspects in for questioning, but only one of them could be linked to the incident,” Mills said.
The 37-year-old man would appear in the Alexandria Magistrate's Court on Tuesday to face charges of murder and attempted murder.
Police were still searching for the other six who were in the bakkie at the time of the shooting.
“The death of Sergeant Gulwa left his colleagues severely traumatised by the incident and counselling has been provided,” Mills said.
Gulwa, who joined the police in 1986, is survived by his wife and three children.