Mpumalanga man burnt, strangled in row over girlfriend

Mpumalanga man burnt, strangled in row over girlfriend


Pretoria – Two Mpumalanga men aged 21 and 34 have been remanded in custody by the Kriel Magistrate’s Court after being arrested for killing a 35-year-old man in a row over a girlfriend.

Mpumalanga police spokesperson Brigadier Leonard Hlathi said the two were arrested after one of them approached the South African Police Service on Sunday, confessed to the murder and led officers to the charred remains of the body.

“Their court appearance stems from an incident in which a man was reported missing by his family at Kriel police station on 30 April 2021. Whilst the police were probing his disappearance, a man suddenly approached them on Sunday where he reportedly confided in them that he had kidnapped the missing man, with the assistance of another man,” said Hlathi.

“He further told police that he had set him alight out of anger over a girlfriend. He then led them to the place where the incident occurred, and when police arrived at the scene they made a gruesome discovery of the man’s charred remains.”

The SAPS has since alleged that Themba Bongani Mziyakho kidnapped the victim on April 28 with the assistance of his co-accused, Vusi Sibande.

“They took the victim to a secluded area where Mziyakho instructed Sibande to leave. Thereafter, he poured petrol on the victim and set him alight. He further strangled the victim when he realised that he was still breathing, then dumped his body in the local river,” said Hlathi.

The two murder accused are set to return to court on Monday for a formal bail application.

Meanwhile, acting provincial SAPS commissioner in Mpumalanga Major-General Thulani Phahla has strongly condemned the incident, urging community members to find amicable ways to solve disputes.

“Our society is facing a serious psychological challenge of uncontrollable anger. They no longer communicate amicably to resolve differences but use deadly violence instead. This is a matter the society should be all concerned about,” said Phahla.

African News Agency (ANA)

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