‘It feels like a dream’: Mother loses daughter in New Year’s Day shooting

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Joined: Nov 2016

Four people, including a 14-year-old girl and her police officer uncle, were killed early on Monday in Block P, a notorious area in Soshanguve, north of Pretoria.

When Nandipha Ziwele was fetched from work early on New Year’s Day, she was expecting to see her 14-year-old daughter, Vuyolethu Ziwele, who she had left at home.

However, her heart was shattered when she was met by the scene of a shooting. She found her daughter dead.

“This is painful. She is my only child. It feels like I am sleeping and need to wake up. It feels like a dream,” she said.

The distraught mother said details of the incident were sketchy. She knows her child and friends and family members were lighting fireworks at the gate.

“I was at work on night shift. I was told family members heard gunshots and children screaming and running into the house.  Mine was the one left outside [dead]. They heard the others saying, ‘Here she is, she has fainted,’ because they are children and don’t know anything. When my mother went outside she saw my child was lying on the ground,” she said.

Before the incident, Ziwele had called and found them praying.

“I called them at noon and they told me they were praying. I said ‘Happy New Year’. I was waiting to see my daughter when I came back from work but instead I found her lying on the ground. They fetched me from work and I arrived at about 2am,” she said.

Describing her daughter’s last moments, she said: “She was so happy because there were shoes she wanted but we couldn’t find the colour she wanted. On the Sunday I made sure I found them. hoping that she would wear them on Monday, but she was not there.”

According to a witness, two cars approached and three men alighted carrying long firearms (rifles) and wearing black bulletproof vests. They opened fire.

Police spokesperson Col Dimakatso Nevhuhulwi said in the early hours on Monday officers found four people with fatal gunshot wounds in the street. She said the circumstances that led to the shootings are unknown and no suspects have been arrested yet.

The police have requested anyone with information that can assist with the investigation to contact the Crime Stop line at 08600-10111 or anonymously report tip-offs on the MySAPS app.

According to an internal police report seen by TimesLIVE, officers found 19 9mm cartridges and 80 rifle cartridges at the scene.

Three parked cars were found with bullet holes.



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