A Bulawayo man, initially believed to have been the victim of a tragic carjacking incident in Johannesburg last Thursday, is believed to have been murdered by his friends for over R5,000.
Reports received by Sunday Southern Eye show that two Zimbabweans and three South African nationals have been arrested in connection with the death of Elias Ndebele.
Ndebele, who worked in Johannesburg, disappeared from where he was parked outside his wife’s hair salon, but his body was found in a bush near where his car was abandoned.
The incident was initially thought to be the result of a carjacking.
A source familiar with the matter revealed that Ndebele, also known as Craig, was preparing to leave SA to work in the UK and had, for some reason, deposited his pre-travel expenses into the account of a friend.
This friend then teamed up with others, all known to the deceased, to rob and kill him.
A narration from one of Ndebele’s people said he spent Thursday, the last day he was last seen alive, drinking with the friend and some men from his neighborhood where he was living with his wife. wife, Thembi Msika and his family.
“He was preparing to go abroad and then asked to use a friend’s bank account to deposit 5,000 rand from which he would pay for the pre-English language tests,” a source familiar with the matter said.
“He asked to use the friend’s account fearing he would be tempted to use it if it remained in his personal account.”
After the transaction, Ndebele and his friends continued to drink.
While they were drinking, another friend came and asked Ndebele to drive him somewhere, and he was never seen alive again.
It is understood that Ndebele was beaten and left for dead but managed to get to hospital where he was released in the early hours of the morning.
However, he did not return home amid indications that the same friends attacked and murdered him.
Relatives and police tracked his vehicle using a tracking device, and the man who bought it named Ndebele’s friends as the people who sold it to him.
The buyer said he was waiting for documents to close the deal, and a trap was set.
When the suspected killers arrived, the police jumped up and arrested them.
“Ndebele’s wife cried until one of the arrested people who continued to stare at her took pity and agreed to show them where they had dumped the body,” the source said.
“She kept asking for his body until the known family friend told her he would show them where he was buried in a shallow grave in a disused mine in Germiston.”
After the body was recovered, it is understood that Ndebele’s friend who was with the deceased when he was parked outside his wife’s workplace, misled the police into believing that the deceased had hired a prostitute for R1,800, and the rest they had been drinking.
It turned out that the money had been withdrawn at different times before and after Ndebele’s death.
An autopsy showed he may have been strangled and his face was unrecognizable after they hit him with bricks.
Prior to Ndebele’s death and discovery, his wife had posted a notice on the community social media sites of Boksburg, Parkrand, Cinderella, Sunward and Elspark where they lived looking for her husband.
Ndebele, 42 when he died, grew up in Emakhandeni suburb of Bulawayo and went to Emakhandeni secondary school.
He is survived by three children and his wife.
No body repatriation plan has yet been announced.