An Orange Farm, Gauteng, family is demanding justice after the body of their five-year-old son was found hidden between the fridges at a tavern on Wednesday night.
Mzwandile Zitho’s naked body was found just hours after he had been reported missing at the Orange Farm police station.
The tavern is situated near the the family’s home.
Police said two people have been taken in for questioning.
Mzwandile’s grandmother Nompumelelo Zitho, 63, told News24 on Thursday that she last saw her grandson around 11:00 on Wednesday.
She said, due to the lockdown, she didn’t allow Mzwandile to play with other children on the streets.
“He was safe at home yesterday. I think someone lured him away to be killed. How can a person do such a thing to my child?” she asked.
“He was playing alone in the yard as usual. His mother was at work at the time. An hour later, I called him and he didn’t respond. I then started looking for him. I asked the neighbours, including the tavern owner, if they had seen him.
“The tavern owner told me not to panic because Mzwandile will return home. He said maybe my little boy was playing somewhere with his school mates,” said Zitho.
Zitho said, after combing the area looking for Mzwandile, she headed to the police station and reported him missing.
Upon arriving back home, neighbours alerted her that Mzwandile’s body had been found.
“I went to the toilet where I saw my boy standing between fridges, dead. I have never seen a dead person standing on his feet in my life before. His neck and ankles were wrapped with strings. His body was smeared with a slimy substance,” Zitho said.
Community leader Meisie Monageng said the incident shocked them.
“We are angry and we demand answers. The person who killed Mzwandile must be arrested and face the law. No one has a right to kill a person in this country.
“What we heard is painful. The life of a little boy was ended by someone who is ruthless,” said Monageng.
She has called for calm in the area and for residents to allow the police to do their work.
“We don’t want to see people taking the law unto themselves. We want people to cooperate with the police,” said Monageng.
Police spokesperson Captain Kay Makhubele said they were investigating a case of kidnapping and murder, and that two people had been taken in for questioning.