The Eastern Cape Provincial Commissioner, Lieutenant General Liziwe Ntshinga has expressed shock and disappointment at the ruthless killings of six persons aged between 21 and 27 with one other seriously injured.
The incident reportedly happened on Wednesday, April 14, at Zingqolweni locality, Ndonga Administrative Area in Lady Frere, Chris Hani District.
According to information the Police were alerted to the incident by a member of the community about four young men who had been burnt alive in an open field in the area.
It was gathered that South African Police Service (SAPS) members responded swiftly, and as they were busy working and processing the scene of crime, another report came through about two more bodies of young men who were found hanged in the nearby forest at Maqhashu Administrative Area.
Lieutenant General Ntshinga said: “ This brought the number of the deceased people to six whilst one managed to escape from the attack and was subsequently rushed to a nearby hospital to receive medical attention. The motive for the killings is not known at this stage.
“ However, the Police have opened six cases of murder and one of an attempted murder for investigation. No arrest is made at this stage. The 72 hour activation plan has been activated to ensure that all necessary resources are mobilised to facilitate investigations and possible arrest of the suspects.
“ My forces are not going to sleep until these heartless criminals are found. We live in a country that is governed by the rule of law and therefore we cannot allow lawlessness and anarchy to rule with impunity within our communities.
“ Those found to be responsible for this cruelty on human lives must be made to find their place behind the prison doors. Mob justice remains a serious offence and those who continue to engage in vigilante style activities must face the consequences of their actions. ”
She urged anyone with information that can lead to the arrest of the suspects to please make contact with the nearest Police station.