A 52-year-old Police officer, Thomas Mabada, attached to the visible policing unit at Siloam became the fourth man in blue to be killed during a shooting in Limpopo since the beginning of the year.
Provincial Police Commissioner Fannie Masemola visited the family of Mabada on Tuesday morning to express his condolences. He said Mabada made the greatest sacrifice of all by giving his life in the effort to serve and protect the community.
He further said that the Police will not rest before the suspects in this incident are brought to book. “We will use all the resources available to track down the suspects. We are appealing to anyone with information that might assist in the successful investigation to come forward,” Masemola said.
Premier Stan Mathabatha is quoted in a press release to have condemned the killing of Mabada. “We call upon all who may have evidence of these crooks to inform us and the Police as urgently as possible. We cannot allow robbers to run supreme in our province,” he said. Mathabatha urged the Police to continue doing their work diligently according to their training without fear or favour.
Provincial Police Spokesperson Ronel Otto said Mabada and a colleague were in pursuit of suspected armed robbers on the road between Siloam and Thohoyandou on Monday evening. “The officer received information about a suspicious looking vehicle in the area which were quickly traced and followed by the two officers. The suspects turned onto a gravel road and when the Police followed shots were fired and Mabada fatally wounded,” Otto said. The suspicious vehicle was later found abandoned.
Mabada’s colleague who was not yet identified by Otto escaped unharmed. “Mabada is the first officer to be killed in the line of duty in Limpopo since the beginning of the year. Three other members who were also killed during a shooting were off duty,” Otto said.
No arrests have been made yet.
Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (Popcru) in Limpopo expressed their shock after the killing of Mabada and expressed their condolences to his family and friends.
Story: RC Myburgh