The Provincial Commissioner of the South African Police Service (SAPS) in Mpumalanga, Lieutenant General Semakaleng Daphney Manamela, has strongly condemned the tragic killing of Sergeant Nhlanhla Petros Sigage.
The 41-year-old police officer was fatally shot by two male suspects in Kanyamazane, outside Nelspruit, on the evening of Friday, 15 September 2023.
According to witnesses, Sergeant Sigage was at a business premises in Ward 4 at Kanyamazane with other individuals when the two suspects entered the establishment.
Speaking fluently in Zulu, they purchased bottled water before unexpectedly drawing firearms and opening fire on Sergeant Sigage at close range. Another individual present at the scene was also injured while attempting to flee. The suspects fled in a vehicle that has yet to be identified.
Upon receiving the report, police and paramedics rushed to the scene. Tragically, Sergeant Sigage was found lifeless with multiple gunshot wounds. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
The injured individual was transported to a medical facility for treatment. The incident is being investigated as a case of murder, with an additional charge of attempted murder.
The motive behind this senseless act of violence remains unknown. The authorities are determined to uncover the circumstances surrounding the incident and bring the perpetrators to justice. A manhunt has been launched for the two suspects who are currently at large.
Lieutenant General Semakaleng Daphney Manamela, along with the management of SAPS in Mpumalanga, expressed their deep concern over the increasing number of police officers being targeted and killed.
General Manamela emphasized, “The killing of our officers must cease immediately, as it undermines our efforts to combat crime and maintain public safety. An attack on a police officer is an attack on the state itself. Those responsible will be tirelessly pursued and held accountable for their actions.”
The activation plan for the first 72 hours has been implemented, mobilizing all necessary resources to hunt down the suspects. A dedicated investigation team, including the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI) Unit, has been established to ensure a thorough and comprehensive inquiry.
The SAPS urges anyone with information regarding the incident to come forward. Citizens can call the Crime Stop number at 08600 10111 or provide information anonymously via the MYSAPSAPP. All information received will be treated confidentially.