Johannesburg - Following two weeks of fervent searching, Eskom employee Thembisile Yende was found dead in her locked office.
According to her partner aseka Modise, the 29-year-old, from Springs mysteriously disappeared two weeks ago after routinely leaving his home for work at an Eskom substation in the vicinity.
Police spokesperson Sergeant Harry Manaka said Yende’s body was found on Monday after 4pm when Eskom employees got a whiff of a pungent smell emanating from the corridors of the substation where she worked.
“The employees then called the police who came and broke down the door of Yende’s office and found her under the desk wrapped in a black, plastic refuse bag. Her body was decomposed,” Manaka confirmed on Tuesday morning.
Last week, The Star reported that police and the Eskom's investigative unit had searched the substation where Yende's company car was recovered.
Asked on Tuesday morning whether the offices were also searched, Manaka said: “According to Eskom, (Eskom's investigative unit) went there with dogs and thoroughly searched the building, including the offices. If there was a smell, I’m sure the dogs would have picked it up. But details are still sketchy at the moment.”
Manaka added that police had been informed that CCTV cameras had not been working “for some time”.
This corroborates what Modise told The Star last week, saying he found from Eskom that the cameras had been down for two weeks on the day she went missing.
According to Eskom spokesperson Khulu Phasiwe, Yende had been on night shift and working on a remote side of the Springs power station at the time of her disappearance. Phasiwe also refuted claims by Modise and Manaka that the cameras had been down for two weeks when Yende went missing.
“The CCTV cameras were working and she was seen on it (when she arrived at work) but shortly after she arrived, the camera stopped working.
“Something untoward happened with the CCTV camera at the Springs power station where she was last seen – what happened to the cameras - this will form part of the ongoing investigation,” he said.
Phasiwe also added that the building and offices were searched after Yende went missing.
“We started a search and rescue operation with the police when she went missing. We will continue to assist the police to get to the bottom of what happened,” he said.
On behalf of Eskom, Phasiwe sent his deepest condolences to Yende’s family, friends and work colleagues.
Yende leaves behind a six-yea- old son.