A multidisciplinary team has been formed to hunt down those behind the murder of Hawks officer Sikhetho Mawila.
Darren Stewart/Gallo Images
- The body of a Hawks officer was found dumped in an open field in Gauteng.
- Police speculate that he may have been murdered during a hijacking.
- A team has been formed to probe the murder.
Police are on the hunt for assailants who allegedly hijacked and killed a Hawks officer on Monday.
The body of Lieutenant Colonel Sikhetho Mawila, 63, was found in an open field in Tsakane, Gauteng, Hawks spokesperson Colonel Philani Nkwalase said on Thursday.
Mawila was attached to the Hawks in Durban and formed part of the Hawks’ Truth and Reconciliation Commission investigation team.
“It is believed that Lieutenant Colonel Mawila left his place of residence in Tsakane at about 14:00 on Saturday, travelling to Durban, where he works, in his private vehicle, a blue Kia sedan,” said Nkwalase.
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“The member informed his family before embarking on the journey that he would pass by a filling station in Heidelberg to fill up [with petrol] before making his way to Durban.”
Mawila’s family became concerned an hour later, when they were unable to reach him on both his private and official cellphones. They later reported him as a missing person, said Nkwalase.
On Monday, police in Tsakane were called out to a report of a body in an open field that a passer-by had found.
On arrival at the scene, police found the body of an African male who sustained head injuries, two gunshot wounds and three stab wounds. The deceased was positively identified as Lieutenant Colonel Sikheto Mawila by members of his family.
A case of murder, kidnapping and hijacking was opened at Hlanganani Police Station.
No arrests have been made yet and the investigation continues, Nkwalase said.
Lieutenant-General Godfrey Lebeya, the national head of the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation, has directed a multidisciplinary team to investigate the murder “to ensure that those responsible are apprehended”.
At least 90 police officers were killed between January and September 2023. Of those, 63 officers were off-duty when they were murdered.
Another 54 law enforcement and security officers were killed nationally in the first nine months of 2023.
News24 previously reported that the Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union condemned the killings saying they not only deplete the ranks of trained and experienced officers, but they are also demoralising to the service.