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By Enkosi Selane

Digital Journalist


Murder or suicide? – KZN traditional healer’s body found decomposing

Investigations into whether the 53-year-old man's death was a murder or suicide are underway.


The decomposing body of a traditional healer was found in his home in Mawothi, KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) on Thursday.

The 53-year-old man lived alone and was found dead by a neighbor.

According to Reaction Unit South Africa (Rusa), the traditional healer was last seen alive about two weeks ago.

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Upon arrival, Rusa members who responded to the scene found the community scattered outside the deceased’s house.

Presumably having been dead for over a week, Rusa said the house had a stench coming out from it.

Grim discovery

The unit responding searched the house and found a horrific scene, with the traditional healer’s body was found dangling from the roof.

The body was found “hanging by a rope tied to a wooden rafter”.

Furthermore, it was found that the man’s property was broken into and pillaged.

Pictures from Rusa show a broken kitchen door handle, the kitchen was also ransacked with furniture out of place and a fridge laying across the floor.

“The house and a kitchen next to the main building were ransacked. A window leading into the house was broken and the burglar bars were forced in,” the security response said in their Facebook post.

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Due to the state of the house, it is unclear whether the victim was murdered or if he died by suicide.

Rusa spokesperson Prem Balram said the case had been handed over to the South African Police Services (Saps).

“It [the case] was brought in Veluram and Mawothi but it is most likely Mawothi Saps,” Balram added.

Speaking to The Citizen, KZN Saps spokesperson Robert Netshiunda said “whether the person was killed or committed suicide can only be known after postmortem”.

Further information about the case will be included once received from the authorities.

Where to get help

Anyone with mental health problems can call the South African Depression and Anxiety Group’s (Sadag) 24-hour mental health helpline on 0800 456 789.

Sadag’s WhatsApp counseling line can be contacted from 09:00 to 16:00 at 076 882 2775.

The South African Mental Health Federation can be reached on 011 781 1862 and LifeLine South Africa on 0861 322 322.

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