A 49-year-old man was arrested on charges of illegal possession of a firearm and ammunition.
RUSTENBURG: A seven-year-old boy was shot dead allegedly by his 11-year-old cousin in Libode in the Eastern Cape, the provincial police said on Monday.
Spokesperson Colonel Priscilla Naidu said said three cousins, all minors, were allegedly playing together at their home in Siqikini location when they found a firearm under the bed on Sunday.
“While one of the children, an 11-year-old boy was fiddling with the firearm (a 9mm pistol), a shot went off fatally wounding Kwanele Zide, 7, in his head,” she said. .
“It is further alleged that the firearm belonged to his 49-year-old grandfather. The grandfather was arrested and detained on a charge of illegal possession of a firearm and ammunition. He is expected to appear in the Libode Magistrate’s Court soon.
“A case of murder was opened. The 11-year-old minor was not arrested. Ownership of the firearm is yet to be established,“ she said.
Acting provincial commissioner in the Eastern Cape, Major-General Zithulele Moses Dladla expressed his shock over the incident.
“It is even sadder when families have to mourn the death of children through unfortunate incidents such as this one all because of a firearm and very often an illegal firearm that would change a family’s life forever.
“I urge communities to assist the police in curbing the proliferation of illegal firearms. In so doing, we will be protecting our children and communities thus people would not be left mourning because of the illegal firearms being in circulation,” he said.
Meanwhile, in the Northern Cape, police arrested a 43-year-old man for possession of unlicensed firearm and ammunition on Sunday.
Northern Cape police spokesperson Sergeant Omphile Masegela said the man was arrested by the Upington Public Order Police after they received information about a man going around threatening people with a firearm.
“They initiated a search operation immediately and the said suspect was apprehended in Paballelo. A thorough search was conducted in his vehicle and a pistol and ammunition was found in his possession,” Masegela said.