Two suspects taken in for questioning in connection with weekend’s tavern shooting in Pietermaritzburg

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Police in KwaZulu-Natal have arrested two people in connection with the tavern shooting in Sweetwaters, Pietermaritzburg.

Four people were killed and eight others injured after gunmen opened fire on patrons at the tavern on Saturday night.

A survivor of the deadly tavern shooting in Pietermaritzburg says the gunmen entered the tavern and began shooting without uttering a single word.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, he’s urged police to find those who are responsible for the attack.

“A car came in while we were sitting enjoying ourselves, the next thing I saw a man came out without saying a word opened fire shooting at us four of our brothers were shot and died instantly others are in hospital as we speak. We are still shocked because the person who shot us did not utter a word we had to hide under the tables while the shooting spree continued. We wish police can find the people who attacked us, we are puzzled why we were attacked,” a survivor explains.

Residents are appealing to the Msunduzi Municipality to enforce its by-laws around the trading conditions for such establishments.

Community member Khumbulani Nene claims that some taverns in the area operate after midnight.

“Yesterday we saw the mayor, he was also here but he said nothing about the bylaws. As residents, we feel that they are doing nothing as the municipality in order for the residents to be safe because with their bylaws it’s up to them to see that by-laws are within the stipulated time as to what time they open and what time they close but seemingly they doing nothing when it comes to that.”

Acting Community Safety MEC in KwaZulu-Natal, Jomo Sibiya says while the township economy is important, community safety should not be compromised.

While the shooting took place at 8 o’clock on Saturday evening, Sibiya has suggested that trading times and security concerns for other similar establishments be revisited.

“We need to strike the balance; we need to find the solutions. That is why I’m saying we need to look at times while we talk about the economy. We must talk about whether is it really necessary to have Taverns that don’t have security that is at the optimal level opening up until two to three in the morning or we must start saying they vary some close at 11, some may be those that we know they’ve got enough security they get an accreditation, give different accreditation, a certain category of Taverns, they open until this time certain category of service they open until this time,” says Sibiya.

Updating the media on investigations, KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Police Commissioner, Nhlanhla Mkhwanazi says the car that was allegedly used by the suspects has been found.

“The incident happened on Saturday night. We responded as the police in terms of Investigation, so we have taken few people already in custody already. The vehicle that was mentioned, we have been able to locate and we have found it. So we are continuing with our investigation, we hope there are more people there…there are many leads that we are following,” says Mkhwanazi.

Police say more arrests are imminent as they are still following leads.

VIDEO: Pietermaritzburg Tavern Shooting – KZN police commissioner Lt-General Mkhwanazi briefs media