UPDATE: Family traumatised after ANC leader’s murder

The house where Sifiso Cele was shot four times

The family of Sifiso Cele (42), the ANC Oshabeni branch leader who was murdered in Margate on Monday this week, say they are living in fear.

During police minister Bheki Cele’s visit to the scene of the murder on Tuesday this week, they told him they feared for their lives as the two gunmen were still at large.

IN CASE YOU MIGHT HAVE MISSED IT : Just In: ANC branch member Sifiso Cele gunned down in Margate

“We don’t know if or when they’ll be back. We are terrified and can’t sleep at night,” said Mr Cele’s stepdaughter, Mbalenhle Chemane (24).

Mr Cele’s partner, Linky Chemane and the children who had been in the house when the murder occurred, had to be given medication after the shooting to help them cope.

The family will also receive counselling.

Ms Chemane told the minister how two men, who were not wearing masks, entered their home around 6.20am.

“They stormed the house and demanded cellphones and cash before locking our domestic worker, my mother, and two young children in the bathroom,” said Ms Chemane.

The traumatised 10-year-old reportedly pleaded with the intruders, “Please don’t hurt me, I didn’t do anything,” while her sister (5) sobbed helplessly.

Police minister Bheki Cele visited the family earlier this week.

The assailants reportedly threatened the children, telling them that if they looked at them, they would be shot.

The men then took the branch leader to the main bedroom where they shot him four times.

“There were three gun shots, ‘pha, pha, pha’, then silence before a fourth shot was fired,” said Ms Chemane.

The family said Mr Cele did not try to resist but had instead followed the men’s instructions.

“He did not fight, nor did he say a single word to them. His arms were raised the whole time. He was shot despite handing over all the items the men demanded.”

Minister Cele said authorities suspected that the robbery had been a smokescreen and that there had been an ulterior motive for Mr Cele’s murder.

“The assailants did not take anything else, even though there were laptops, a television, and other gadgets in plain sight. This is why we feel the killers had other motives.”

Regional ANC spokesman, Selvan Chetty, said the region had been shocked by the murder and described Mr Cele as a disciplined and active member.

Mr Cele’s memorial service will take place at Oshabeni MPCC today (Thursday) at 1pm while his funeral will take place at the Oshabeni Grounds this Saturday, May 12 from 9am.

Police are still investigating and no arrests had been made at the time of going to press.

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  AUTHOR
Zimasa Mgwili
Reporter

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