Cops arrest 5 more after ANC ambush

Mary Papayya

Mary Papayya

A police task team probing the murder of an ANC supporter and the wounding of seven others in an ambush on Monday near Pietermaritzburg has arrested five more suspects.

This brings to seven the number of suspects arrested in connection with the attack on an ANC motorcade at Swayimane on Freedom Day. Police said the five suspects were arrested yesterday.

"We have also recovered two more firearms suspected to be have been used in the attack," said Senior Superintendent Phindile Hadebe.

Also yesterday, one of the first suspects arrested - Mphathiseni Gumede, 27, - who was arrested on the day of the attack, appeared at the Camperdown magistrate's court on charges of murder and attempted murder.

He was remanded in custody until his next court appearance on May 13.

The ANC welcomed the arrests in what it believes was a "politically motivated hit by IFP supporters".

The ANC's Nomfundo Mcetwywa appealed to all political leaders to preach "tolerance and a safer KZN".

The IFP was not available for comment but had earlier denied that its members were responsible.

DA provincial legislature caucus leader John Steenhuisen said it was critical for the police to step in and act swiftly.

Political commentator Protas Madlala said: "The arrest will send out a clear message that such acts will not be tolerated. We cannot afford an escalation of the violence."

Violence monitor Mary de Haas said police intelligence and speedy detective work was crucial to end such attacks.