Kamogelo Olaitan

A lecturer was mistaken for a goat thief and brutally murdered in a case of mob justice on Saturday in Limpopo.

Siphiwe Zondo, 43, was driving back home with goats on his bakkie, when he stopped at a local spaza shop to buy a cool drink in Mamaolo village outside Lebowakgomo.

Locals allegedly accused him of having stolen the goats. The lecturer from Waterberg FET college tried to explain and show them proof of purchase, but no one was willing to listen to him.

Siphiwe, a father of two, was assaulted, stoned and burnt alive. His car was also torched.

His wife Ntombi Zulu told Scrolla.Africa that Siphiwe bought goats on Friday and he wanted to sell them in KwaZulu-Natal. He felt they didn’t have enough goats and went to buy more the next day.

“I work far from home so he called me to say he wanted to buy more goats to take to KZN during the week,” Zulu said.

She said she became worried when she called all three of his cellphones and they were all off.

“A friend later told me my husband had an accident and that I should drive home. When I approached my house, I saw there were many cars and I knew something was wrong,” she said.

Zulu said her husband has been buying goats in Limpopo since 2011, when he took a job at a local college. He then sold them in KZN as they are in high demand there.

“The police found proof of purchase on the scene, which shows he was trying to prove to the mob he bought the goats legally. But clearly no one wanted to listen to him,” said the grieving widow.

Zulu believes that one other reason that got her husband killed was the fact that the locals heard from his accent that he was not Pedi.

“They took a good man and father away from me and our kids. He was a hard worker who loved his family. I don’t know how we are going to go on without him,” she said.

Limpopo police spokesperson Colonel Mamphaswa Seabi said a manhunt has been launched for the suspects.

“Members of the community are cautioned not to take the law into their own hands but rather handover the suspects to the police for investigation and prosecution,” Seabi said.

Anyone with information is requested to contact the Investigating Officer, Sergeant Makadani on 0720297499 or Crime Stop on 0860010111 or the nearest police station or the My SAPSApp.


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