Kidnapped municipal manager and driver reunited with families

The Nkangala municipal manager Maggie Skhosana and her driver have been found alive after they were kidnapped outside the municipal offices on Thursday last week.

According to Mpumalanga police spokesperson Colonel Donald Mdhluli, Skhosana and her driver, Gugu Mtsweni, were found in the early hours of Thursday near the N14 road in Diepsloot, northern Johannesburg.

“It is said that both were reportedly dumped by their assailants in the bushes near the N14 road in Diepsloot,” said Mdhluli.

“The driver was [found] tied with ropes but had managed to escape to the road where a taxi driver came to her rescue. She then related the story and the taxi driver immediately informed the police.

“[Upon arrival], the police proceeded to the bushes where the municipal manager was found. After driving to the Diepsloot police station, the two victims were taken to hospital and later reunited with their families in the early hours of Thursday, 27 October 2022. The suspects are still at large.”

It is alleged that Skhosana, who is wheelchair-bound, and Mtsweni were abducted by men disguised in police uniforms. The suspects demanded a R5-million ransom for their release.

Mdhluli said Skhosana’s car and her belongings were found near a mine in Middelburg.

“According to information, it is said that the victims were attacked at the gate of municipality premises before they could enter. Reports indicate that the victims were stopped by suspects in a white sedan. Both vehicles of the victims and the suspects were seen driving in the same direction.

“Soon after the incident was reported, the provincial commissioner of police in Mpumalanga, Lieutenant-General Semakaleng Daphney Manamela, assembled resources and established an investigating team to ensure that the two victims are brought back alive. The victims’ vehicle was recovered on the same day, October 20, abandoned in one of the mines in Middelburg.

“The wheelchair, as well as other belongings of the victims, were also recovered together with the abandoned vehicle, however, there was no sign of the victims.

“The collaboration between members of the police in Mpumalanga and members of the directorate for priority crime investigation [DPCI] in Gauteng assisted in the probe,” Mdhluli shared.

Manamela thanked the authorities and members of the community for their collaboration.

“Lieutenant-General Semakaleng Daphney Manamela has expressed her gratitude to all members from both the Gauteng DPCI and Mpumalanga, as well as the taxi driver who acted as a Good Samaritan.

“The general also thanked everyone who contributed to the investigation, as well as the support received from the entire police management, including the office of the premier in Mpumalanga. The general further appreciates efforts by members of the public.”

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