KwaMusi residents live in fear after shooting incident

Canaan Mdletshe

Canaan Mdletshe

KwaMusi reserve residents in Nongoma, northern Zululand, are living in fear after a gun-toting suspect, who is wanted for the murder of a well-respected local man, wasseen roaming the area.

The suspect was reportedly armed with an two firearms, on an AK-47.

Mkhethwa Mgedeza Mhlongo, 48, was shot dead in on Saturday night during a wedding ceremony at a relative's home.

The suspect, who is also related to the family, allegedly sprayed Mhlongo with bullets and injured two other people.

It is alleged that an argument ensued over why Mhlongo had knocked down some donkeys.

A relative, who declined to be identified, claimed yesterday that people were living in fear because the suspect was a known criminal.

He said the suspect was reportedly part of the botched cash-in-transit robbery in Nongoma last month.

"When the argument started, he was not even part of it, but emerged from nowhere and opened fire in a packed house, killing Mhlongo and injuring two others. We are scared of him because he is always armed," said the relative.

He said even after killing Mhlongo, the suspect acted as if he had done nothing wrong.

The suspect was also allegedly wanted in Gauteng for skipping bail.

Police spokesman Captain Vusi Mbatha confirmed that the suspect was wanted by police.

But he could not confirm whether or not the suspect had skipped bail.

Mbatha, however, confirmed the botched robbery in Nongoma recently.

He said police acted on information they had received and foiled the robbery.

"The suspects hijacked a security van but police managed to chase them away and found 13 firearms in their car."

Mbatha urged residents to contact the police if they saw the suspect in the area.

"We badly want him and whoever happens to see him must contact the police immediately," said Mbatha.

"We have been searching for him since Saturday but he has been dodging us."