No body found near Mandela residence: Minister Cele

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Police Minister Bheki Cele on Saturday dispelled rumours that a body was found near the Mandela residence in Soweto on Friday night.

In a media briefing outside Mam’ Winnie Madikizela-Mandela’s house on Saturday evening, the Minister addressed rumours that a person was killed when alleged ex-uMkhonto we Sizwe (MK) combatants discharged firearms outside the fallen struggle heroine’s home. Madikizela-Mandela passed away on Monday at Netcare Milpark Hospital in Johannesburg after a long illness.

“There was an issue raised that somebody died around that incident. In the morning, I confirmed that nobody died, nobody was injured from that,” said Minister Cele.

Minister Cele, however, condemned the discharge of firearms in the presence of people in a built-up area, saying it is illegal to do so.

“It’s illegal to discharge a firearm in a built-up area, [especially] when there are people in that particular area,” he said.

He said the police are investigating the matter, which took place as the country mourns the passing of Mama Winnie, as she was affectionately known. Throngs of ordinary South Africans, the President, his Deputy and Cabinet Ministers, among others, have paid their respects to the Mother of the Nation by visiting her residence in Soweto.

Minister Cele said police have gathered cartridges related to the shooting incident as part of their investigation. It will be determined whether or not the firearms used in the incident are linked to any other crimes.

“We had to pick up those cartridges, not because somebody was shot. I still confirm that nobody was shot, nobody was injured and nobody died. But there is a rumour that on the other side of the rail, a body was picked up. We have all checked no body was picked up.

“After this, I will be dealing with the ex-combatants of uMkhonto we Sizwe,” said the Minister.

Meanwhile, police presence has been increased in and around the Mandela residence. –

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