FREE STATES, South Africa – Following the recent trend of kidnappings in Free State and every other part of South Africa, a man suspected to be a kidnapper has narrowly escaped death from the hands of angry mob in Qwaqwa.
Disgruntled residents on Tuesday, 7th of October took law into their hands when they descended on a man suspected to be a Nigerian in a shopping mall for allegedly attempting to kidnap two women in the local mall in Maluti crescent, Qwaqwa.
The video of the incident which has long gone viral on social media attracted mixed reactions. Some said he should have been killed to serve as a lesson to those who would want to engage in such venture, while others who doesn’t believe in jungle justice, said that the man was supposed to be handed over to the police, rather than being beaten.
An eyewitness, who spoke to our correspondent, said “a man in a white polo car attempted to kidnap two women while they were walking in a mall. The women had screamed for help when he attacked them which attracted the attention of passerby who apprehended him when he tried to run away.”
“The angry mob wasted no time descending on the man, even when some people tried to make them understand that the man did not attempt to kidnap the women, rather he was running away from the shop he stole from. The man (suspect) whose name remain unknown confessed stealing some goods from one of the shops in the town.”
“The plea from some of the crowd and that of the suspect to let him go fell on deaf ears as the angry mob continued beating him, trying rip his clothes off.”
“Without the swift intervention of South African Police Service, SAPS, the crowd would have mobbed the suspect to death.”
“The police officer who arrived at the scene, took the suspect into custody and dispersed the angry crowd.”
The Eastern Free State police spokesman WO Mmako Mophiring confirmed the incident to OgeneAfrican saying “it’s true that a Nigerian man was a thief, not a kidnapper as the residents thought. He, however, says no case of theft was opened this far.
Meanwhile, last week, a male student from Maluti Tvet college was almost kidnapped by men who were driving in a polo car with no registration number in Phuthaditjhaba, Qwaqwa.
His sister, Tebello Buthelezi said her brother was on his way to school when he ran into the kidnappers. They drove pass him and stopped their car, got out, walked back to where he was and picked him up. But as they were about to open their car and push him in, another car appeared and that scared them, that they left him and jump into their car and drove away.
“Though the kidnappers fled the scene with my brother’s cell phone, am so happy he escaped with his life and unhurt,”. Tebello said.
She warned the residents to be at alert as the cases of kidnapping are on the increase in the area.
However, the Tvet’s School Representative Council (SRC) communication’s officer, Lesley Mokoatala while reacting to the incident, said female students are most likely to fall victims. He said they (kidnappers) entice them with money and fancy things. He then warned the female students and women in general to always be careful and weary of men who come around them with frivolous promises as they are likely to be kidnappers or involved in other criminal activities.