North West police are offering a reward of R100‚000 for information that might lead to the whereabouts of Tebogo Ndlovu – even though they believe he is dead.
Ndlovu’s fate has for weeks been at the centre of a dispute between police and some residents of the Majakaneng community.
Even though a local man has been arrested for Ndlovu’s attempted murder‚ many believe Ndlovu is still alive and have launched a campaign to find him.
Police believe that Matthew Benson is the man who killed Ndlovu‚ who was last seen on August 2. Ndlovu’s friends allege that Benson had caught them stealing oranges from a farm owned by Benson’s parents.
“The reward has been issued to assist investigators. At this moment we don’t know if Ndlovu is alive or dead. We need information that can lead us to him or his corpse‚” said Mokgwabone.
Benson has pleaded not guilty in the matter and claims Ndlovu is still alive.
The 24-year-old previously told the court during his bail application that he has a witness that has seen Ndlovu alive. Those supporting Benson in the case set up a reward to back his claim after he was denied bail on September 29.
Benson’s supporters have raised R50‚000 and hired a private investigator to sniff out Ndlovu.
“The reward is still running. I don’t want to give any information about the private investigator but we have hired one‚” said Mariaana‚ who refused to provide her last name.
Meanwhile‚ all Ndlovu’s family want are answers.
“All we need as a family is Tebogo’s body. We’ve been pleading with Benson to tell us what he did with Tebogo’s body. Can he please tell us the truth so we can find closure?” said Nancy Sekgobela‚ Ndlovu’s aunt.
Ndlovu was with two accomplices on the day of the shooting. The men claim they left an injured Ndlovu at the farm after he was shot. They both pointed out Benson as the shooter.
Blood stains were found at the farm. The samples were taken to a laboratory and they positively matched blood taken from Ndlovu’s mother‚ Martha Ndlovu.
Benson is due to appear in the Brits Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday for attempted murder.
Police spokesman Brigadier Sabata Mokgwabone confirmed that police have issued a reward for any information that might successfully lead to Ndlovu.
BAFANA NZIMANDE / TimesLive