amputee ON THE WARPATH
A 35-year-old Durban attorney, Sphephelo Nkabinde, is to sue the minister of police in Lesotho for armed robbery and assault after he was allegedly attacked and shot by members of the Lesotho Mounted Police Services (LMPS).
Nkabinde told Sowetan that when he was in the mountain kingdom on business last month he and his friends were indiscriminately fired upon. His leg had to be amputated as a result.
Nkabinde recalled his ordeal from his hospital bed. He said he was on his way back to Durban when "all hell broke loose".
"I was with my friend, Vusi Zwane, and two female friends when we were confronted by two Lesotho policemen.
"We asked them to produce ID cards, but instead one pulled out a gun and started firing at us," said Nkabinde.
While the policeman was shooting at them, they managed to drive away but a puncture stopped them in their tracks.
"They were following us on horseback. Other policemen joined them and we came under more fire.
"Vusi and I ran. I was shot in my leg. I hid in a maize plantation," he said.
Nkabinde said he bled profusely and could not move.
"The police threatened to shoot one of the women so I crawled out. One of them asked me for diamonds and an AK47 rifle. I told him I only had my cell phone, my professional gown and personal stuff. Later I realised that they had searched the car and stolen R3500 in cash and my two cell phones.
"They left and then returned with a stretcher and I was taken to hospital," he said.
He woke up to find his left leg had been amputated.
"Vusi was arrested but the prosecution threw the case out."
Nkabinde's family drove from KwaZulu-Natal to fetch him.
"As soon as I get out of hospital I will file papers against the Lesotho minister of police.
His father, Refuge Nkabinde, is pleading with the South African government to intervene so that the matter can be resolved at government to government level.