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88-year-old man found dead in a drum

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The man, who lived with his 98-year-old sister, was found tied up and stuffed inside a drum in his basement.

The home of David Govender who was found dead in a drum in his basement. Picture: Motshwari Mofokeng/African News Agency(ANA)

Durban – The Reservoir Hills community is reeling in shock after an 88-year-old man was found tied up and stuffed inside a drum in his basement on Wednesday night. 

The man has been identified as David Selbrin Govender.

Police spokesperson Colonel Thembeka Mbele said police found his dead body in a drum wrapped with a thick mat in his Dunkeld Road home.

Both his legs and hands were tied up.

Govender lived with his 98-year-old sister who has been hospitalised after the incident. He was not married and did not have any children

Sydenham police are investigating a case of murder. 

According to a report from Rodney Moodley of Inkosi Security they were called out at 9.25 pm to do a check at the Govender home for a missing person.

Moodley said after checking the property there were no sign of anyone.

“A police detector dog with the handler Chad Russow was called out to check the home and surroundings.  We found that his dog was very active at the back of the property in the basement. Police Search and Rescue was then called out with their dog. They positively made the discovery of the body,” Moodley said.

Varshen Govender, a close friend, said Govender was a prominent builder. 

“He was close friends with my father and my family. He taught me a lot. I check on him daily. I was not at home this weekend and I assume he hired help to clean his yard,” he said.

David Selbrin Govender was found tied up and stuffed inside a drum in his basement on Wednesday night. Picture: Supplied

“I got a funny smell at the basement when we went to find out where he was. He was missing since Monday. When I got to the basement I got a terrible stench. At the corner under bundles of wood and sand were drums. We dug up the sand and found six drums. He was stuffed in one of them,” said an emotional Govender.

A neighbour said they heard Govender arguing with someone on Monday night.

Ish Praladh, Reservoir Hills Ratepayers Association chairperson, said the community was in shock at the manner in which the pensioner was killed. He said it tied in with murders happening around in the country.

Ray Jeawon, the spokesperson for the Reservoir Hills Community Policing Sector, said it was tragic that Govender had reached a ripe old age to meet such a grizzly end.

“The community is totally aghast and in absolute despair that an individual of such seniority had to lose his life tragically. I commend all that assisted and brought some sort of closure for now in as far as the disappearance of the individual concerned. Hope the family seek solace and find peace. Hopefully, the perpetrator will be brought to book in due cause,” he said.

Govender’s tools and money were presumed stolen.

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