Gonubie farmer Fritz Joubert was shot dead during an altercation with police.

Gonubie - East London Station Commander Brigadier Mxolisi Mqotyana commended the members of the South African Police Service for their bravery after saving three innocent lives and ensuring their safety by acting swiftly in a hostage situation.

This comes after Eastern Cape police confirmed that a white farmer was shot dead by police shortly he viciously attacked a sangoma who had been staying on the man's Geluksdal farm in Gonubie, East London. 

The two were allegedly socialising in the early hours of Saturday morning when an argument started and escalated into a physical confrontation.

The suspect assaulted the man with his fists and a rifle. The fight resulted in the victim sustaining severe head injuries. When the police arrived they found him lying on his back with numerous head injuries and already passed on.

Warrant Officer Odendaal from Bluewater SAPS was the first person to arrive at the scene. He entered the residence, where the farm owner said to him that "nobody is going to leave the farm premises today".  The farm owner had taken the friends' children hostage and locked them in the bathroom. 

The mother was hiding outside, fearing for her life. 

Cst Bam from Gonubie SAPS also arrived at the scene. It is believed that the farm owner locked the door and instructed the police to place their firearms on the table. However, the police did not comply with his instruction.

Bam then went to the bathroom, where he found the two boys, aged two-weeks-old and two years old hidden in the bath. Bam rescued the children and handed them over to the mother. 

Meanwhile, Odendaal and the farm owner clashed. During the altercation, the attacker was fatally wounded. 

Firearms and ammunition including a police flag was confiscated from the scene and booked at Gonubie Police Station.

IOL