Rogue cop and his ‘fake’ police hunt witness
20 July 2017
“They are counting the hours,” Glebelands sources reported, “the thugs have all the information they need on him.”
On Monday a brave man testified before the Moerane Commission of Inquiry into the causes of the political killings in KwaZulu-Natal. He told of Glebelands Hostel’s rogue cop forcing residents to collect money so he could buy guns – R1 state-issue high-powered automatic rifles that have became trademark of the hostel hits. It was the way Nkosinathi Shezi died, in a hail of finger-sized bullets. The same bullets that punched holes where the sun now shines through the walls of Block R garage and lodged in the knee of Ubunye bamaHostela leader, Bongani Mthembu. The sound of the ‘big gun’ often echoed through the red brick blocks, the police looked away.
That was 2014. Today these bullets cut down ANC politicians from Umzimkhulu to Harding and beyond.
Nathi had also been a brave man. During last year’s peace process he did ‘the right thing’ and provided a statement that described how resident’s collections were also used to bribe an investigating officer to ensure there was ‘insufficient evidence’ in the docket to prosecute the rogue cop’s killers. For his pains the investigating officer framed him for a double murder and stole his phones. When the court foiled that plan the rogue cop finished him using a Harding hitman to coordinate local talent. The politicians looked away.
At Glebelands a witness statement is a death warrant. Ask Sipho Ndovela, or Makhosi Zide, Ntozakhe, Mlungisi Cele, or the man gunned down as he got off a taxi in busy Smith Street on 18 May, apparently lured back to Durban by a girlfriend who was working for the killers. But you can’t ask them anything because they’re all dead. The public looked away.
Now another witness is in danger. Real danger. Right now.
After testifying at the commission, the rogue cop contacted the witness and tried to blackmail him. He threatened to frame him for crimes he didn’t commit to force his silence. He tried to drive a wedge of suspicion between recently reconciled enemies.
The witness, who has been in hiding since Nathi was killed, then received a suspicious call. Police called him at work and asked him to meet them to discuss the Moerane Commission’s planned visit to Glebelands on Friday. “How did they know his employer’s land line?” he wondered. He has always been so careful.
At Glebelands everyone is hyper-security aware. You have to be. Ears are everywhere and surveillance is a real and constant threat to resident’s safety. You can’t trust the police. You can’t trust your own shadow.
When asked, the ‘fake’ police revealed an obvious lie. The witness declined to meet them. But the question remains, were they ‘real’ police working with the rogue cop, or were they the rogue cop’s killers posing as ‘fake’ police. The rogue cop is so well-connected anything is possible. The IPID looked away for so long it went blind.
Whispers were coming from the old blocks. Within hours of testifying the thugs had known the witness’ identity. Commissions leak it seems, as badly as Glebelands plumbing.
“They are closing in” sources said. “Any time now… they have all the information they need. They are right behind him.”
Minutes counting down a brave man’s life. Sleep? Not this lifetime. Never look away.
Vanessa Burger (Independent Community Activist for Human Rights & Social Justice)