An ANC councillor was shot dead at his home in Umlazi in KwaZulu-Natal on Tuesday.
Bhekithemba Phungula, who was also a branch chairperson, died in a hail of bullets as unknown assailants opened fire, the ANC in the eThekwini region said in a statement.
Regional task team coordinator Mluleki Ndobe called the killing “cowardly”, saying they were “deeply disturbed by the shockingly vicious, callous and cruel murder”.
“We implore the police to spare no effort to bring the perpetrator or perpetrators of this dastardly act to justice. There must be neither refuge nor respite from the arm of the law for the murderers of comrade Phungula.”
Ndobe said acts of violence against political leaders had “seemingly lessened in intensity” in KwaZulu-Natal, and it was “disheartening… they were once more rearing their ugly heads”.
“Whatever the motive may be, we want to get to the bottom of the reason behind the murder of comrade Phungula. His children have lost a father, his wife a husband and the community has lost a leader.”
A month ago, Mtubatuba councillor Philip Mkhwanazi was shot dead outside his house in Khula Village near St Lucia.
He was deputy chairperson of the party’s Injojela branch and ANC caucus whip at the Mtubatuba local municipality.
That same day, ANC Youth League branch secretary Kingdom Gcabashe, 29, was shot and killed outside a friend’s house in Hammarsdale, near Pietermaritzburg, Sowetan Live reported at the time.
eThekwini Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda said it was sad that the municipality had been “robbed [of] such a valuable leader and a dedicated servant of the people” in Phungula.
“His death is indeed going to leave a huge void. We call upon the law enforcement agencies to leave no stone unturned to bring the perpetrators to book and we plead with anyone who might have information to come forward.
“As the community, we need to assist the police to speed up the investigation so that culprits pay the price for heinous crime (sic).”