Ngcobo church remains sealed after police shootout

On Friday, police shot and killed seven men and arrested a further ten in the churchyard after an earlier attack last week during which a group of men stormed a police station, killing five officers and a retired soldier.

Religious leaders and members of the community converge outside Ngcobo police station after the fatal shooting of 5 police officers and a retired soldier. Picture: SAPS.

JOHANNESBURG – The church where seven suspects were killed in a shootout with police in Ngcobo in the Eastern Cape remains sealed off as investigators comb the scene for further clues on a suspected cult there.

In a brazen attack last week, a group of men had earlier stormed a station killing five officers and a retired soldier.

They also stole guns before blowing up two ATMs.

On Friday, police shot and killed seven men and arrested a further ten in the churchyard.

It’s now reported the gang had planned to kill more officers.

Police have confirmed that firearms stolen during the murder of officers at the Ngcobo Police Station were recovered at the church at Nyanda village where a cult had been living.

Eyewitness News has been reliably informed that police recovered two shotguns two rifles and six 9mm pistols at the scene of Friday night's shootout at Nyanda village all of which were stolen from the Ngcobo police station.

It’s also understood that 43 male suspects were detained for questioning and 11 vehicles are being checked to see if they are linked to criminal activity.

It has been reported that 10 men who were arrested are members of the cult.

However, police spokesperson Vuyo Mhaga says this will be confirmed as the investigation continues.

“So as soon as the investigation is a bit clearer to all of us, that’s when we’ll say with assurance that they were members of that particular church. The only thing that worried us was that the church was housing the criminals.”

He says women and children were rescued from the scene and the church will be closed as soon as investigations have been concluded.