Private investigator withdraws from Tebogo Ndlovu case

13 October 2017 - 11:27 By Bafana Nzimande
ALIVE OR DEAD? Tebogo Ndlovu - believed by his family to have been shot and killed; said by others to be in hiding
ALIVE OR DEAD? Tebogo Ndlovu - believed by his family to have been shot and killed; said by others to be in hiding

The private investigator hired by a group of North West farmers to investigate the mysterious disappearance of Tebogo Ndlovu has dropped the case due to unpaid service fees.

The investigator‚ known as Wes‚ was approached by a group of people who believe Ndlovu is part of a crime syndicate called the Suicide Gang and that he is in hiding after he was shot while stealing oranges from a farm in Mooinooi in the North West.

The shooting occurred on August 2.

Ndlovu was in the company of two accomplices who have pointed out Matthew Benson as the shooter. Benson was arrested on September 16 for murder and attempted murder following an intensive police investigation.

A woman who would only give her name as Marianna initiated a financial reward and hired Wes to trace Ndlovu after the accused was denied bail on September 29. A total amount of R51‚000 has been raised.

Details about the reward have been posted on social media‚ accompanied by a picture of a Facebook user named Tebogo Ndlovu Jack Jack.

When contacted by TimesLIVE‚ “Jack Jack” was surprised to hear of the murder mystery because he is based in Mpumalanga and has never been to the North West.

Jack Jack said the Suicide Gang is a hip hop group known to him. Jack Jack is part of a traditional dance group called Hlanganani.

But Marianna was convinced that Jack Jack is the man they are searching for.

Wes contacted TimesLIVE on October 6‚ saying he wants to meet with Jack Jack for the purpose of his investigation. An arrangement was made that Wes and Jack Jack would meet four days later in Mpumalanga.

Jack Jack had agreed to the meeting because he had reported to the Mpumalanga police that his life has been threatened due to the reward issued with his image.

On the day the parties were scheduled to meet‚ Wes sent a text message saying he has withdrawn from the case.

“I am afraid that my client did not come to the table and I do not work for free. All the best‚” read his text.

Wes declined to elaborate on the reasons for his withdrawal. He said the matter is between him and his client.

Marianna confirmed that Wes is no longer conducting an independent search but another private investigator has been tasked with the responsibility.

“Wes had not started anything yet. We have another investigator on this case and the reward is still available for any information that might help us get hold of Ndlovu. We know he is alive and we won’t stop searching until we find him‚” Marianna said.

Ndlovu’s aunt‚ Nancy Sekgobela‚ maintains that the family has not seen the 24-year-old since August 2.

Sekgobela also disputes claims that there is a crime syndicate in Majakaneng called the Suicide Gang.

Police investigating officer Colonel Isaac Tlhapi previously told the Brits Magistrate’s Court that he had received information that Ndlovu had been seen alive‚ but it became clear that people had spotted the two accomplices and not Ndlovu.

Magistrate Jethro Mosime also dismissed rumours that Ndlovu was seen alive after August 2.

North West police said the reward is a private initiative and can in some instances help the families involved‚ but those responsible for the fund and the search must constantly communicate with the police.