South Africa | Eastern Cape mom and five children found murdered, police looking for husband

A 42-year-old Eastern Cape mother and her five children were found butchered in their home in Kwaaiman village, near Mqanduli, on Tuesday night. The youngest of the children is six months old.

Police found the murder weapon, believed to be an axe, at the scene and the woman's husband, a Zimbabwean national, is missing.

Eastern Cape police spokesperson Brigadier Thembinkosi Kinana said the case was under investigation.

"Preliminary investigation indicated that the police were called after neighbours discovered that something wrong had happened in the home of the deceased family. On arrival at the scene of crime and as they started with [the] investigation, the police found six people murdered and among them were children.

"No arrest has been made at this stage. It is alleged that the husband to the 42-year-old mother, who is of Zimbabwean origin, has disappeared. Police believe that he can assist the investigations in the case," said Kinana.

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Provincial police commissioner Lieutenant General Liziwe Ntshinga described the incident as shattering.

"It is inconceivable that just at the opening day of the 16 Days of Activism we can wake up to such a horrible and distressing incident. Whoever is behind these gruesome and heartless murders must be found without any delay," the commissioner added.

Ntshinga ordered the activation of a 72-hour plan to ensure that all the necessary resources needed to make speedy arrests and finalise the investigations were in place.

Eastern Cape government spokesperson Mvusiwekhaya Sicwetsha described the incident as barbaric.

"To make matters worse, the youngest of the children is just an infant. This was a very barbaric act. The provincial executive council condemns this incident and we call on the police to speedily bring the perpetrator to book," Sicwetsha added.

Anyone who has further information or know the whereabouts of the husband can alert their nearest police station or call Crime Stop on 08600 10111. All information received will be treated confidentially.

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