SOUTH AFRICA – A 39-year-old man was attacked and set alight by a mob at the Muhovhoya village in Limpopo on Monday.

Police said on Tuesday they had responded to frantic calls from the area and, on arrival, made the gruesome discovery of the man’s badly burnt body.

The victim was certified dead on the scene. None of his attackers were present when officers arrived.

The attack was prompted by allegations that the man had raped a 17-year-old mentally disabled girl in the area.

“It is alleged that the girl went to the nearby bushes to collect fire wood with other women from the village when the deceased attacked them.

“The other women managed to run away, leaving the teenage girl behind. And that’s when the deceased allegedly raped her,” said police spokesperson, Col Moatshe Ngoepe.

He said the enraged community attacked the man with various objects before he was set alight.

Before the attack, the community gathered “to discuss the matter”.

“They then started tracing the suspect until they caught him around the village and attacked him,” said Ngoepe.

A case of murder was opened, the suspects involved were still unknown and there had been no arrests made, police said.

A manhunt for those involved has been launched, and police have asked those with information to come forward to assist in the investigation.

Limpopo police commissioner Lt-Gen Nneke Ledwaba condemned the continuous acts of mob attacks and killings, which are prevalent in many parts of the province.

Ledwaba has called on community members to abide by and to respect the rule of law by cooperating with police instead of taking the law into their own hands.

“Those who still participate in these barbaric acts will be dealt with harshly and without compromise,” said Ledwaba.


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