Pretoria - Two suspects arrested in connection with the double murder of high-ranking SA Municipality Workers Union (Samwu) members appeared before the Thohoyandou Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday, Limpopo police said.
Brothers Simon Radzuma, 26, and Percy Radzuma, 33, were remanded in custody until April 30 for their formal bail application after being charged with murder.
Police spokesperson Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo said the duo were arrested for their alleged involvement in the murder of Timson Musetsho, 50, and Ronald Mani, 50, in January 2019.
In a statement, Mojapelo said: “Musetsho was shot while parking his motor vehicle in the garage at his home in Makwarela, Thohoyandou, in January 2019. He was taken to Thohoyandou hospital but later succumbed to his injuries. Six days later, Mani was shot dead at Singo bottle store in Itsani, also in January.”
He said the brothers, also from Makwarela, were initially arrested by the Tzaneen Tracking Team at Rwanda village for possession of firearms and ammunition last month, but that soon unveiled more crimes.
“The team that was following the suspects’ tracks immediately took control of their custody and commenced with the process of linking them to the other crimes under investigation. After the conclusion of the investigations, we linked both suspects to the two murders in Thohoyandou.”
According to Mojapelo, the pair were also found to be positively linked to several other cases.
It is believed the two murder victims were targeted for being vocal against those implicated in the brazen looting of R2.3 billion from the VBS Mutual Bank, that saw politicians and municipal officials being arrested.
The union’s provincial secretary, Patrick Aphane, welcomed the arrests.
"We will continue to mobilise in remembrance of the two comrades (Musetsho and Mani) and all other comrades who lost their lives for speaking out against corruption, particularly the VBS illegal investment of municipal finances, primarily in violation of the Municipal Finance Management Act and secondarily in violation of written directive from the National Treasury advising against it.
“We still demand that all municipal leaders and officials that participated in this VBS daylight heist of magnanimous proportions be hounded out and arrested. We further wish to put it on record that where there were council resolutions to invest, roll call be extracted and those who voted for investments be held collectively liable for repayment of monies to society and be disbarred from holding public office,” said Aphane.