Mthokozisi Ntumba: Four officers arrested for murder
Facing intense scrutiny, the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) has delivered on four murder charges placed against the officers responsible for the death of Mthokozisi Ntumba.
Ipid makes key arrests in Mthokozisi Ntumba death
In a statement released on Monday, the internal affairs authority confirmed that four police officials have been booked for killing the 35-year-old bystander who met his untimely death last week.
Ntumba was going on about his day in Braamfontein, when armed public order police released gunfire in his direction, striking him multiple times.
The recent Master’s graduate who worked for the Department of Human Settlements had nothing to do with the student protests that had shut down the Johannesburg city centre.
Ipid confirmed that all four police officers have been charged with murder, three counts of attempted murder and defeating the ends of justice.
The shocking addition of attempted murder has yet to be fully detailed by the internal affairs unit. However, it does call into question the allegations levelled against officers who were handling the protests last week.
Did they use live ammunition against protesters? This question and others pertaining to the ‘defeating the ends of justice’ charge will be unravelled at the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court, on Wednesday, where all four officers are scheduled to appear.
Ipid in a race to close a case that could divide SAPS
So far, Ipid has kept its cards close to its chest. With no information on the evidence collected thus far, we are left to speculate on the strength of the case they are building against a few of their own.
Ntumba’s post-mortem may have offered insight into the cause of his death. If this is true, it could provide clarity on the speed of the indictments.
A ballistics examination was also conducted. Monday’s statement suggests that the weapon that was used to murder an innocent bystander may have come from the holster of one of the police officers.
All of this and more, we expect to hear of on Wednesday when the faces of Ntumba’s accused murderers are unveiled.