Four police officers arrested and charged for Mthokozisi Ntumba's killing

Four officers will appear in court on Wednesday, Ipid confirms

15 March 2021 - 14:36
Mthokozisi Ntumba, an innocent bystander, was killed when shots were fired during a student protest in Braamfontein.
Mthokozisi Ntumba, an innocent bystander, was killed when shots were fired during a student protest in Braamfontein.
Image: Mthokozisi Ntumba/Facebook

Four police officers were arrested on Monday in connection with the death of Mthokozisi Ntumba, who was shot dead on the sidelines of student protests in Braamfontein, Johannesburg, last week.

The Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) confirmed that the four officers were from the public order policing unit.

“The four officers will appear at the Johannesburg magistrate's court on Wednesday March 17. They are facing charges of murder, three charges of attempted murder and defeating the end of justice,” said Ipid spokesperson Ndileka Cola.

Ntumba, 35, died when police fired rubber bullets at protesting Wits University students. He was shot shortly after leaving a doctor's appointment in the area.

A video circulating online suggests that Ntumba was apparently shot at close range, with several rubber bullets. In the video, he could be seen gasping for air on the sidewalk, with bloodstains on his blue shirt and blood on his face. He died moments later. 

His death elicited outrage, with the police criticised by some for using excessive force when dispersing black protesters as opposed to white protesters.   

A father of four, Ntumba worked at the department of human settlements in Tshwane and was responsible for about 20 projects in that city.

Police minister Bheki Cele had expressed regret at his death, vowing that action would be taken against those responsible.

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