Police in Mpumalanga have warned communities to refrain from taking part in mob justice following incidents of torching of alleged suspects’ houses around the Nkomazi area.
In the latest incident, the community torched the house of a man accused of fatally wounding a 26-year-old on Saturday at a local tavern in Steenbok. As a result, his family was left without a house, said Brigadier Selvy Mohlala in a statement on Monday.
Two suspects, a 74-year-old man and a 42-year-old woman, have been arrested and charged. They made their first court appearance at Nkomazi Magistrate’s Court on Monday.
This comes barely a week after a 42-year-old woman’s house was torched by an angry mob at Block B.
The woman was alleged to have been involved in the murder of a 29-year-old man, who was reported missing but later found dead in a toilet at Block C near Tonga.
“This country is governed by laws and it can never be that criminality will be disguised in the name of taking control of the crime situation. People should rather join hands with police via legitimate structures like Community Policing Forums (CPF). If there is any information that may assist police then the details should be shared with the police,” said Provincial Commissioner of the Saps in Mpumalanga, Lieutenant-General Semakaleng Daphney Manamela.
Earlier this year, a 32-year-old man allegedly shot and killed a 24-year-old man at his parent’s house.
“Upon hearing several gun shots, the deceased’s younger brother got out and found his brother’s lifeless body with several gunshot wounds. It is said that he immediately attacked the gunman with a sharp object repeatedly until he succumbed to the injuries,” said Mohlala.
Police at Tonga were alerted and when they arrived at the scene, they found two lifeless bodies as well as a firearm. The suspect to the second murder was still on the scene.
Two cases of murder were opened by the police and a 22-year-old man was arrested and the two weapons were confiscated for investigation purposes.
Manamela has urged members of the public to refrain from taking the law into their own hands when crime has been committed.
“Instead citizens should report crime to the authorities and then allow the law to take its course,” he said.