Shooting at Wits protest: Doctor fought to revive patient he had just seen

Deceased shot three times during Wits protests

11 March 2021 - 09:50 By penwell dlamini
Wits students singing and chanting struggle songs.
Wits students singing and chanting struggle songs.
Image: Thulani Mbele

Dr Tebogo Sedibe has told of the last moments of the man who was gunned down during Wits protests in Braamfontein, Johannesburg, on Wednesday.

Sedibe, a doctor at My Clinic on De Beer Street, told Sowetan he had examined the man, who has been named by the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) as Mthokozisi Ntumba, just minutes before he was killed, allegedly by police shooting at Wits University students during a protest outside the facility.

Sedibe said he treated Ntumba for a gastric problem at about 10.30am and then released him.

“While sitting with another patient, I heard gunshots outside. I finished with the patient and then walked out and my assistant came in and said I should rush outside because the patient I had just seen has been shot. I got my PPE [personal protective equipment] and went outside,” Sedibe said.

“I found him on the ground. One bullet hit him in the face, another in the chest and another right on the gastric area. He was still alive, gasping for his life. He was hurt badly.

“I resuscitated him for about 20 minutes while waiting for a response vehicle from Netcare. They came very quickly. We connected him on the monitor ... there was no sign of life.”

Sedibe said he also treated four students who had been shot and were transported to different hospitals in ambulances.

Salon owner Fola Bello said she was still traumatised after witnessing the incident.

“The cop that shot him jumped over him. The guy was still alive, fighting for his life. He was shaking. They [police] then went and stood at the corner of the road while the guy was still alive and then disappeared,” Bello said.

After the shooting, students continued to protest not far from where Ntumba's body lay.

Wits students have been protesting since Monday over the exclusion of students with historical debt. The institution has told those who owe fees that they cannot register for this year until they pay a certain amount.

A man was shot dead with rubber bullets after leaving a clinic in Johannesburg.
A man was shot dead with rubber bullets after leaving a clinic in Johannesburg.
Image: Alastair Russell