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Policeman shoots friend, then himself

An off-duty policeman from Mbekweni has escaped death after allegedly shooting his friend dead before turning his firearm on himself.

The tragedy took place on Monday 5 August at 19:40 at the officer’s house in Thsepiso Street, Mbekweni.

Sergeant Njongo Ngcukana (35), who has been on active duty at Mbekweni Police Station for 12 years, was found in a critical condition at his house by an eyewitness.

According to Mbekweni police spokesperson Sgt Nceba Vanqa, the eyewitness, brother of the deceased, Mzwamadoda Qwitha (32), said the policeman and Qwitha were having a drink together.

“It is believed Ngcukana suddenly went to his bedroom and came back with his service pistol, which he then pointed at Qwitha and shot him in the head. Ngcukana then shot himself in the chest.”

The eyewitness immediately informed the police, who arrived and saw that both the deceased and suspect were covered in blood.

Qwitha died at the scene and ambulance personnel rushed Ngcukana to Mediclinic Paarl, where he is still recovering under police guard. A charge of murder has been filed against Ngcukana, and police are investigating.

“We at the Mbekweni police station were all shocked when we heard of this tragedy,” Vanqa said. “The community must please pray for their police officers.”

. In August 2011, Mbekweni police officer Warrant Officer Jonathan Dampies shot himself in front of his colleagues while out on patrol in a police vehicle in Mbekweni.

. In another incident, Constable Sicelo Dyasophu (34), of the same station, was found by a colleague on 3 October 2014 in a critical condition at his house in New Drommedaris Street, after having shot himself. He died on the way to hospital.

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