Citizen Reporter
2 minute read
27 Oct 2019
10:25 am

Sindiso Magaqa whistleblower Thabiso Zulu shot in ambush

Citizen Reporter

KwaZulu-Natal police have opened a case of attempted murder following the incident. 

FILE PICTURE: Sindiso Magaqa. (Photo by Gallo Images / Sowetan / Antonio Muchave)

One of the whistleblowers in the murder of Umzimkhulu councillor Sindiso Magaqa was shot in the arm during an ambush on Saturday night.

KwaZulu-Natal police have opened a case of attempted murder following the incident.

EWN reports that unknown gunmen ambushed Thabiso Zulu, who was also a friend of the slain politician.

“Police received a report that last night the victim was walking along Thokoza Road with his friend when a vehicle stopped and three men alighted from [it] and started shooting at them. The victim was shot on his left upper arm,” KwaZulu-Natal police spokesperson Brigadier Jay Naicker said.

Zulu had testified at the Moerane Commission of Inquiry into the political killings which have plagued KwaZulu-Natal.

A week ago EWN reported that police had deliberately failed to grant Zulu and his fellow whistleblowers protection.

This followed reports from back in August that these whistleblowers had been exposed to possible assassination because of negligence by the SA Police Service.

READ MORE: Magaqa whistleblowers at risk of assassination because of Cele – Mkhwebane

The damning allegations, which also engulf Police Minister Bheki Cele, are contained in a report from the office of Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane, which has not yet been made public.

“The failure by the minister of police and the SAPS to provide security protection for Messrs Stuta and Zulu exposes them to the risk of being assassinated,” the report says.

“It also exposes the SAPS and the South African government to a risk of unnecessary legal claims and financial losses as their families could decide to claim against the government for damages for the loss of lives should they be assassinated.”

Zulu is an ANC member, anti-corruption activist and friend of Magaqa, while Les Stuta is an official at Harry Gwala Municipality. They were were responsible for blowing the lid on the alleged reasons behind the assassination of Magaqa – a former ANC Youth League secretary-general and PR councillor at uMzimkhulu Municipality at the time of his death.

Magaqa was shot, along with colleagues Nontsikelelo Mafa and Jabu Msiya, in the uMzimkhulu area in July 2017, but only died in September 2017 due to “complications from multiple gunshot wounds”.  Mafa and Msiya both survived.

Since Zulu and Stuta first made public the allegations of corruption at Magaqa’s funeral, they have had to contend with multiple death threats.

(Compiled by Daniel Friedman. Background reporting, ANA.) 

For more news your way, download The Citizen’s app for iOS and Android.