Durban - Nico Munsamy, one of the survivors of a drive-by shooting in Verulam on Friday which claimed the life of his cousin, Nathaniel Naidoo, is living in fear.
Munsamy, 25, who was driving, was shot in the legs and Naidoo, also 25, in the head when they were fired upon in Riet River.
Naidoo, a waiter at the Oyster Box restaurant in uMhlanga, died on the way to hospital. Munsamy has been discharged from hospital and is recovering at home.
Three other passengers - their aunt Michelle Mohamed, 36, cousin Firdos Mohamed, 26, and a family friend, escaped unharmed but are traumatised.
The shooting is believed to be linked to the taxi industry and competition on certain routes.
Their cousin, Candice Govender, said Munsamy ran a lift club to uMhlanga using his Mazda 3.
“It was around 6am and they were driving along Neptune Drive when a white Fiat Uno drove up next to them and a suspect opened fire. Nico was shot in both his legs and Nathaniel was shot in the head.
"The other passengers hid. Luckily they were unharmed.”
Munsamy then drove to the house of his friend, Zain Amod, who lived nearby.
Said Amod: “I was inside my house and I heard a car hooting outside my home. I heard the passengers screaming ‘help us, help us’.
"When I came outside I saw Nico. His car was riddled with bullets. I asked him if he could move and he said no. The other man was very bad, he was bleeding, so I picked up Nico and carried him to the back of the car.”
Amod’s neighbours phoned the police and an ambulance but the minutes ticked by.
“I realised it was a life-and-death situation so I got into the vehicle and drove them to Mount Edgecombe Hospital.”
Govender said the family were grateful to Amod for his help. She described Naidoo as a well-mannered and respectful person who took care of his parents Dan, 53, and Rosy, 52.
“He was a member of his church worship team and he played the guitar. Nathaniel was a beautiful soul who did not deserve to die the way he did. He was the most humble person and he would never harm anyone.”
Govender said the shooting had been most traumatic for Munsamy.
“Losing Nathaniel has left Nico shattered. They were very close. Nico cannot talk about what happened as it’s too painful.
"This was no ordinary crime. It was not a hijacking or robbery but a drive-by-shooting or hit on his life. We are praying the (attacker) is caught.”
Nathaniel was buried on Sunday.
Police spokesperson Captain Nqobile Gwala said a case of murder and attempted murder was being investigated.