“This is like Marikana all over again”. This was the sentiment of striking Willowton Logistics PIETERMARITZBURG employees who watched four of their colleagues being shot in cold blood by unknown gunmen in Mountain Rise during the early hours of Monday morning.
Two men, identified as May Mofokeng (45) and Alfred Malinga (32) were shot dead and two others, Themba Mvelase (50) and Christian Masisi (45) sustained critical injuries from gunshot wounds when an unknown number of gunmen attacked eight men sleeping in their vehicles on a field near the Mountain Rise police station.
The men, who would not disclose their names for fear of victimisation, are part of a group of about 20 truck drivers who have been protesting outside Willowton Logistics offices on Ohrtmann Road for the past month. The eight men live in other parts of the province and come into Pietermaritzburg on Sunday evenings, remaining in the city during the week and sleeping in bakkies at the field after concluding their protest action during the day.
Instead of returning home on Friday last week, as they had done every weekend for the past month, the men said they did not have enough money to make the journey back and decided to remain at the field. According to four of the men who witnessed the shooting, they were awoken just before 01:00 by the “cracking” of gunshots.
The gunmen had made their way to the first of three bakkies parked together, where three men were sleeping in the back under a canopy. The gunmen allegedly opened the canopy door and shot at the three men while they were asleep, killing one instantly. — The Witness.