The Old Crossroads community is reeling in shock after the body of a woman believed to be in her 20s was found in a yard on Monday morning, August 1.
Women’s Month got off to a grim start for the community when a child from the house who was preparing to go to school around 6am saw a man trying to dump something which was in a wheelie bin. After finding out it was a body, the teen ran to the house to tell his grandmother what he had seen. They both ran frantically to the neighbour’s home to explain what had happened before calling the police.
According to the witness, who asked not to be named, the unrecognised man then ran away.
On Tuesday afternoon, Nyanga police said the deceased had not been identified. SAPS spokesperson Captain FC van Wyk says a murder case has been opened and no arrests have been made.
The incident has sent shock waves through the township and neighbouring areas like Nyanga and Philippi.
Nyanga Community Police Forum (CPF) secretary Dumisani Qwebe condemned the incident and appealed to residents to help the police in finding the culprit.
Mr Qwebe said he cannot believe that somebody could commit such a gruesome act. He said he believed that the deceased had been killed days before she was dumped because the body was already decomposing.
“We are all in shock with this, including the old woman that lives in the house. Now it is time for the residents to act and find the murderer. We have been going around in our areas to fight crime and now this. She was killed somewhere and kept wherever she was kept but because she was decomposing, the killer then decided to dump her,” he said.
The CPF secretary said they will leave no stone unturned in this matter. He said the community should stand up and in particular men. “As men we have a task to do now. These acts are by us so we need to stand up and be counted. We are going to have to stand up as men in this community and protect women, not only because it is Women’s Month but because it is our job and duty to make sure that women are safe. Women should not be scared when they see men, they need to feel protected,” said Mr Qwebe.
He also urged families whose young daughters had gone missing to come forward to the Nyanga police.
The equally shocked member of the neighbourhood watch Bandile Mhlola said they got information that the man who dumped the body was from Zwelitsha, Nyanga, but that was unconfirmed.
He said they wish the family of the deceased can show up so that they can bury her. “This is shocking news to all of us here. We have some sketchy information that this man came from Zwelitsha. We are still looking for facts. But mostly we hope the family of the deceased can be found. It is sad not to have a chance to bury your loved one,” he said.
Recalling her good days in Crossroads with her grandchildren and good neighbours, the grandmother said finding a corpse in her yard was the most shocking experience of her life.
The owner of the yard, who asked not to be named for fear of victimisation, said she is not sure whether the culprit was going to dump the body near the church next to her house because people normally dump there.
“Everyone dumps near the church illegally. I am not sure if he was going to do it or not. But this is the shock of my life. I am this old and never experienced something of this nature. We have been here for years and never had such an incident,” she said.
She said she and her grandson would need counselling to overcome this.
“I am so devastated and traumatised by this. I am not sure how I am going to sleep,” she told Vukani.
None of the community members recognised the deceased, who was wearing a black floral shirt and charcoal jeans.