Mpumalanga provincial police commissioner Lieutenant-General Mondli Zuma, (first from left) community safety MEC Pat Ngomane (second from left) and Emalahleni executive mayor Linah Malatjie (first from right) cut the ribbon to open the renovated house of the Shabane family in Hlalanikahle, while Gabisile’s mother Annah Shabane (second from right) and albino rights activist Tryphinah Nhlapo (third from right) look on. PHOTO: ANA Reporter

Witbank - Mpumalanga Community Safety member of the executive council (MEC) Pat Ngomane on Thursday, urged community members to work with the police to protect children living with albinism from attacks.

“These people did not choose to have white skin and they were created by God,” said Ngomane.

“Let us protect our people who are under attack. There are traditional healers out there who heal people, and there are also witches. There is no muti that you can create by killing someone.”

Ngomane was speaking in Hlalanikahle in Mpumalanga at the home of Gabisile Shabane, the 13-year-old girl with albinism who was kidnapped with another child from the same home on January 28, allegedly by three men who entered the house through a broken window. 

Mpumalanga community safety MEC Pat Ngomane (first from left wearing a white shirt), executive mayor of Emalahleni Linah Malatjie (second from left) and other government officials plant a tree at the Shabane family home in Hlalanikahle in Mpumalanga. PHOTO: ANA Reporter

Her headless body was found buried in a shallow grave in Cullinan, east of Pretoria, in February. The body of 15-year-old boy Nkosikhona Ngwenya was found on the side of the N4 freeway in Mpumalanga in the same week.

More than 30 pre-school children also attended the unveiling of security upgrades at the home of albino girl Gabisile Shabane and Nkosikhona Ngwenya, who were kidnapped from their home in Hlalanikahle in Mpumalanga in January and later found murdered. PHOTO: ANA Reporter

Traditional healer Thokozani Msibi, as well as Brilliant Mkhize, Themba Thubane and Knowledge Mhlanga were later arrested and charged with kidnapping and murder. They were denied bail by the Witbank Magistrate’s Court and on Wednesday the case was postponed to August 19, 2019, for trial in the Delmas High Court.

Ngomane also unveiled security upgrades to the Shabane family home, which has also been renovated. The security features include a boundary wall, window and burglar doors as well as four surveillance cameras that were installed on some external corners of the house. He said the security upgrades and the renovations were voluntarily funded by private businesses. 

African News Agency/ANA