Two children aged 2 and 3 were found dead in a toilet in Diepsloot extension 1 this morning, a massive man hunt is underway. Picture: Antoine de Ras, 15/10/13

Johannesburg - Police are still searching for a fourth person in connection with the kidnapping and murder of two girls in Diepsloot, north of Johannesburg, Gauteng police said Wednesday

Three people had already been taken in for questioning, Lt-Col Lungelo Dlamini said.

Two-year-old Yonelisa Mali and three-year-old Zandile Mali were found dead in a toilet cubicle at 5am on Tuesday by a resident in the area.

Police are investigating whether the killings are linked to that of a five-year-old girl in the same area in September. Police suspected she had been sexually violated and strangled.

“A suspect who was taken in for questioning relating to the murder was later released,” Dlamini said.

It was suspected that the Mali girls were also strangled, but a post mortem would confirm the cause of their deaths.

A team of detectives had been appointed to investigate the murders, Dlamini said.

The Democratic Alliance described the murders as tragic.

DA MPL Kate Lorimer said there were policing problems in the area because there was not a proper police station.

“The contract to complete the Diepsloot police station was cancelled by the department of public works in 2010 after the contractor defaulted due to cash-flow problems,” Lorimer said in a statement.

“The station is partially complete and has been derelict for the last three years.”

This meant there was a lack of visibility and continuous patrols by police, Lorimer said.

“It is extremely important for a settlement of this size to be served by a dedicated number of members from the family violence, child protection and sexual offences unit,” Lorimer said. - Sapa