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By Shanice Naidoo

Digital Journalist


Loyiso Mabandla Nkohla murder: Suspect found dead in holding cell

Police ruled out foul play after a suspect in the Loyiso Mabandla Nkohla murder case died.


In a shocking twist, the Hawks confirmed the third suspect in the Loyiso Mabandla Nkohla murder case died a day after his arrest.

The suspect was found dead in the holding cells before his appearance in the East London Magistrate’s Court on Friday.

Hawks spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Siyabulela Vukubi said the suspect died of natural causes.

“No foul play is suspected as it is confirmed that he died of a heart attack this morning,” he said.

This, however, will form part of the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) investigations.

Nkohla was killed in a hail of bullets while addressing community members of an informal settlement at Philippi railway station in April. 

It is believed he was targeted for his role in talks to clear Metrorail’s Central Line, where families had built their homes. 

ALSO READ: Another suspect arrested for murder of activist Loyiso Mabandla Nkohla

Previous arrests

The Hawks arrested 38-year-old Mziyanda Mdlungu in Katlehong, Tshwane, on Monday. This followed the arrest of Zukisa Tshabile last month.

Mdlungu and Tshabile will appear in the Athlone Magistrate’s Court on Monday.

ALSO READ: Second suspect arrested for murder of activist Loyiso Nkohla

Circumstances around shooting

Nkohla, a former City of Cape Town councillor, was with fellow ANC councillor Thembinkosi Pupa when the shooting occurred. They were engaging with shack dwellers who were occupying the train station.

He was elected as a deputy secretary in an ANC branch in Nyanga, Cape Town, in 2002. He was 20 years old.

In 2008 he was elected deputy chair of the Dullah Omar region in Cape Town, before becoming a councillor in 2011.

In 2013 he was thrown into the national spotlight when he objected to bucket systems in Cape Town communities by throwing human waste at Cape Town international Airport.

ALSO READ: Former ‘poo-thrower-in-chief’ Loyiso Nkohla shot dead

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