No sign of kidnapped Moti brothers as Malema urges supporters to help find ’culprits’
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Cape Town – With the police having extended their search for the kidnapped Moti brothers to various provinces, EFF leader Julius Malema has urged his supporters to help track them down.
Yesterday, Malema tweeted: “All ground forces, let's be the first to find the culprits, we just want to talk to them. Attack!!!’’
There is still no information about the whereabouts of Nazim and Shakira Moti’s four sons following their kidnapping in Polokwane, Limpopo, on Wednesday morning. Zidan 6, Zayyad, 11, Alaan, 13, and Zia, 15 were abducted by seven armed men dressed in white overalls on their way to school.
The family driver of the prominent business couple wasn’t harmed in the incident.
Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo said yesterday the motive for the kidnapping is still unknown as no communication has been received from the kidnappers. A large team of police officers countrywide, especially in Gauteng, are involved in the search.
All ground forces, let's be the first to find the culprits, we just want to talk to them. Attack!!! pic.twitter.com/7fUKpc7q00— Julius Sello Malema (@Julius_S_Malema) October 20, 2021
Phillip Smit, the family’s legal representative, said people from all corners of the country are offering assistance, the Polokwane Review reported. The Moti family have urged the public to help them with any information that might ensure the safe return of their children.
“We have received hundreds of phone calls. We just need the boys back. That is all we are praying for,” Smit said.
Smit told Independent Media yesterday: “The father and mother are very stressed and it’s very traumatic for them.
’’The criminals have not only taken one child, they have taken all their children so you can imagine how stressful it is for them but they are getting support from their family, friends and community. We pray for a positive outcome soon.”
Smit, who believes the kidnapping is ransom-motivated, told YOU magazine the Moti boys’ parents are doing their best to remain positive.
“They are actually doing reasonably well – they’re still full of hope. It’s clearly a scheme to extort money from these people in exchange for their children – a typical ransom situation.
“It’s a game. These criminals are playing a game with the community. At the end of the day, it’s a waiting game, a cat and mouse game.”
Nirvana community leader Solly Hassan said: ’’The community really cares for each other and the pain felt by one of the residents or families is felt by the whole community.
’’We stand together. We pray that the kids are returned safely to their parents.”
Lizette Lancaster, from the Institute for Security Studies, told TimesLive: ’’There is a high level of planning involved and it might be that these people are quite cool and collected and they know exactly what they are doing, they have done this before — and in that case, getting the police involved and making sure that you use all avenues to track down these children is quite important to make sure that these people are found and arrested.
“Of course there is always the risk that matters become almost hot ... they might choose to abandon the children somewhere or abandon their plans to ask for a ransom. But it was very well planned and the chances are that they will still (make a demand). We are just speculating.”
Limpopo Premier Chupu Stanley Mathabatha visited the Moti family yesterday and said: “As provincial government, we are appalled by these ruthless deeds and we shall not rest until these criminals face the wrath of the law.”
The Limpopo Social Development Department has sent social workers to assist the Moti family, while psychosocial support will also be provided to the pupils at the school the Moti boys attend.
The 64-year-old driver had fetched the children from Nirvana and was driving along the R37 road around 7am, near the N1 bypass, when he was suddenly blocked by two vehicles, a white Kia Sorento and black Mercedes-Benz, while taking the children to the Heuwelkruin Curro school in Polokwane..
Seven heavily armed men approached the Motis’ vehicle and fired shots. The Moti children were forced out of their parents’ BMW and into another getaway vehicle, a Toyota Fortuner. Cellphones belonging to the boys were found in Flora Park.