ANC ward councillor shot dead in Soshanguve

Spokesperson says they cannot speculate on the motive for the shooting

ANC ward councillor shot dead in Soshanguve

23 May 2018

An ANC ward councillor in Soshanguve was shot and killed on Tuesday evening at a construction site.

Siphiwe Montlha, who at the time of his death was the ANC's Ward 37 councillor, in Soshanguve, was shot in Block GG after having attended an ANC meeting, the party's regional spokesperson Teboho Joala said on Wednesday.

Joala said Montlha had been with a friend, who was shot in the leg.

He added that they could not speculate on the motive for the shooting, but that they had full confidence that the police would bring the perpetrators to book.

"His death will leave a very big void in the hearts of those that served with him in council, as he enthusiastically served in various committees with eagerness and great sense of duty," said Aaron Maluleke, ANC chief whip in council, in a statement.

"I am truly saddened by this tragic loss of one of our own, and pray to God that he should give us strength and courage to pull through this difficult time," a visibly shaken Maluleke said.

Montlha was an "organic product of the Congress movement", and has served his community and the movement from an early age, with absolute dedication and commitment, said Joala.

"Among the various roles that he played, he served as district chairperson of the Young Communist League, secretary of sub-district of the SACP, branch chairperson of the ANC, and also as a branch secretary of the ANC.

"In 2011, the ANC and the community of Ward 37 asked him to stand as a ward councillor candidate during the local government elections and, true to his revolutionary character, he did not hesitate. He went on to be elected and served his full term, and he was subsequently re-elected as a ward councillor in 2016."

The DA in Tshwane strongly condemned the killing and called on the police to urgently investigate.

"This latest incident brings the number of political killings in the area to three, following the killing of two other ANC councillors in 2006," said the DA in a statement.

"Regardless of which party we belong to or what ideology we subscribe to, councillors, just like all other political activists, are there to serve our communities. It is with this shared understanding of our purpose that we call for an urgent investigation so that those guilty of this heinous crime can be brought to justice.

"Our heartfelt condolences go out to councillor Montlha’s family, friends, community members, as well as to his colleagues in the City of Tshwane Council."

Police spokesperson Colonel Lungelo Dlamini confirmed that police were investigating the shooting.

Dlamini said Montlha had gone to a construction site, where he was accosted by two men. The motive behind the killing was still unknown, he added.