The KwaZulu-Natal provincial government has on Monday condemned the brutal killing of two of its police officers.
The two officers, a man, and a woman, were shot dead in the Taylor’s Halt area in Pietermaritzburg on Saturday night.
KZN police spokesperson Colonel Thembeka Mbele said that Sergeant Makhosaze Mdlangathi, 33, and Sergeant Mfikelwa Mtolo, 36, were ambushed and killed by gunmen.
The two officers were involved in a romantic relationship.
According to reports, the couple were off duty and driving to Mtolo’s residence when they were ambushed.
They sustained multiple wounds, with police reports indicating that around 30 pistol and rifle cartridges were found at the scene.
The two officers were found without their service firearms.
Mdlangathi was stationed at Plessislaer police station in Pietermaritzburg and Mtolo was stationed at the Richmond police station.
KZN MEC for Transport, Community Safety, and Liaison Kwazi Mshengu expressed his dismay following the double murder, tasking police in the province to bring the shooters to book.
“It is disturbing that our police officers continue to be killed in such a brutal and senseless manner. We condemn the heinous double murder of Sergeant Mdlangathi and Sergeant Mtolo, who were both very young and had a lot to offer the police service,” Mshengu said in a statement on Monday.
Mshengu said Mdlangathi and Mtolo’s murder came just days after another officer was shot dead. Mshengu said that the officer died while protecting a victim of gender-based violence (GBV), adding that “police continue to be targeted”.
“As prescribed in the Constitution, police are there to protect, prevent, combat and investigate crime. Therefore an attack on police is a direct attack on the state and this has serious consequences on law-enforcement deployments because the state invests a lot of money in police training and education.
“The threat to the lives of police members will not be tolerated and we urge police to defend themselves by all means necessary should they be under any attack,” Mshengu said.
-African News Agency
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