Sangoma faces arrest after consultation leads to mob burning man to death and destroying cars, houses
Johannesburg – Limpopo police are preparing charges to be levelled at a sangoma for his involvement in a mob justice attack that left a man dead in Gandlanani village, Giyani.
Twenty-one other people have been arrested for the horrific attacks which saw the man killed and properties destroyed.
The events of Sunday stem from the disappearance of 25-year-old Mahlori Maluleka, who was reported missing in August.
Spokesperson for the Limpopo police Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo said a sangoma was consulted and is alleged to have pointed out to three people, a businessman and his employees as those responsible for Maluleka’s disappearance.
It is not known who consulted the sangoma but Mojapelo said the mob gathered at a soccer ground on Sunday morning.
As they made they way off the soccer field, they allegedly came across one of the businessman’s employees, a 52-year-old man walking.
“They severely assaulted, put a tyre around his neck and burnt him.
“Police arrived in time to rescue him from the mob,” Mojapelo said.
As police were busy rescuing the man, the mob allegedly rushed to the house belonging to the businessman's mother.
“They torched it together with three vehicles which were parked inside the garage.
“Shortly after that, they moved to the businessman’s residence and pelted his double-storey house with stones, damaging the electric fence and some property.
“The angry mob continued with the attack and burned the house belonging to the other employee.
“On the way to the brick yard owned by this businessman, they came across one of his vehicles and torched it. The driver managed to escape unharmed,” Mojapelo said.
“The Public Order Policing with assistance from the Airwing were able to stabilise the situation.”
Mojapelo said the burnt man was taken to hospital with serious injuries. However, he later succumbed to his injuries.
He said while they have 21 people were to appear in court for murder, arson and malicious damage to property, there were searching for the sangoma and other people linked to the rampage.
He said the people who killed the man and destroyed property did so after the sangoma pointed out the victims people as being behind Maluleka.
“We don’t know who consulted the sangoma as we can’t say it was the family or community members. As it is, we are preparing charges against the sangoma,” he said.
Limpopo Police Commissioner Lieutenant-General Nneke Ledwaba said they will leave nothing to change in finding all the culprits.
“We condemn, in the strongest possible terms, the vigilante actions manifested by the community of Gamdlanani village and nothing will be left to chance when hunting down the remaining culprits.
“Community members are urged to assist the police in searching for the missing person and desist from taking the law into their own hands,” Ledwaba said.
More arrests are expected and anyone with information is requested to contact Colonel Anna Mzimbha on 0825100177, the Crime stop number 0860010111 or their nearest police station.