Donkey 'vleis' sold with pap

Arrest exposes brutal cruelty to animals

12 December 2017 - 05:00 By Sipho Mabena
Image: iStock

The slaughter of donkeys has raised concerns about consumers being duped when ordering "pap and vleis" from vendors on the outskirts of Pretoria.

Three men caught driving a Citi Golf loaded with buckets and rubbish bags of freshly slaughtered donkey meat appeared in the Ga-Rankuwa Magistrate's Court on Monday on charges of livestock theft.

Zimbabwean national Mgcini Dube was denied bail and local residents Stephen Sepeng and Collen Molapo were released on bail of R1000 and R500 respectively.

The trio were arrested on November29 when an off-duty police captain spotted a suspicious vehicle.

SPCA inspector Mishack Matlou was shocked when he arrived at the scene of the arrest after the organisation was contacted by the police.

"The meat was packed in buckets and refuse bags. We are still investigating how we could add cruelty to animals to their charges because the donkeys were killed in the most horrible way, sometimes hacked with pangas."

He said since 2015 more than 300 donkeys had been slaughtered in the Winterveldt, Kgabalatsane, Klipgat and Madidi areas. The meat had been removed and the heads, legs and skins of more than 30 donkeys had been found tossed in the bush.

"We have information that this meat ends up in pots of food vendors and ultimately plates of customers," he said.

Matlou said the SPCA and police would be checking on street vendors in the area. Food vendors who failed to produce a receipt for their meat would have some explaining to do.

Matlou said that some donkey meat was allegedly sold as "game" to unsuspecting commuters at Mabopane station.

Michael Moeng, a donkey owner from Mafufu in Jericho, was shocked when he found the legs, heads and skins of three of his missing donkeys.

He earns a living using donkeys to haul a cart transporting various items.

"I went to the police station to report the matter and I was told three men had been arrested a day before. What makes me sick is that I know these people."

Richard Dube, a regular at a popular food vendor in Winterveldt, was shocked about the donkey slaughter but said he trusted his vendor.

"I have bought food almost on a daily basis for the past five years from the same vendor, which is why I trust him."