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Grade 6 pupil was killed by stray bullet

A 12-year-old girl was killed by a stray bullet intended for a man picking up his grandchildren at a school in Katlehong.
A 12-year-old girl was killed by a stray bullet intended for a man picking up his grandchildren at a school in Katlehong.
Image: 123rf/ tussik13

A grade 6 pupil, shot dead outside a primary school in Ekurhuleni, was killed by a stray bullet, fired as attackers gunned down their intended target, an elderly man.

The Gauteng education department said the shooting occurred at the Izibuko Primary School in Katlehong on Wednesday afternoon, not Thursday morning, as was earlier reported.

The 12-year-old was a pupil at Mogobeng Primary School, also in Katlehong.

She was at Izibuko Primary to see a friend, who had returned from a school trip.

The man was at the school to pick up two grandchildren, the department's Steve Mabona said.

Witnesses said his attackers followed him and started shouting at him, before opening fire. He died at the scene. 

The schoolgirl was rushed to a hospital with a head wound, but did not survive.

The slain grandfather was allegedly linked to the taxi industry.

Izibuko principal Bongani Ngwenya said they were “deeply shattered” by the shootings.

“It’s very traumatic. As a result, the attendance is badly interrupted,” he said, adding that pupils who witnessed the shootings were not at school on Thursday.

“A parent came and asked what happened here yesterday, because their child didn’t sleep last night,” he said.

“We have planted the seed of violence in the minds of these children. This is a photograph in their mind they will never forget,” said Gauteng education MEC Panyaza Lesufi, who visited Izibuko on Thursday morning.

He added: “Our learners expect a trip to be an exciting moment, not a period to mourn.

“There’s an urgent need, as society, to condemn this kind of brutality and the manner in which lives are becoming cheap,” he said.

Gauteng premier David Makhura has appointed a retired judge to chair a commission of inquiry into violence in the taxi industry, the MEC added.

“We hope those who have done this will be named,” Lesufi said.

He urged the police to leave no stone unturned and to make arrests within the next 72 hours.

“They can run, they can hide, but we will find them.”

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