Sitole activates 72-hour plan to probe deadly attack at EC police station

Four balaclava-clad men shot and killed awaiting trial prisoner Simphiwe Maqungu in a cell at the Ngangelizwe Police Station in Mthatha on Sunday.

FILE: National Commissioner of Police, General Khehla Sitole. Picture: GCIS.

CAPE TOWN - Police commissioner Khehla Sitole has activated a 72-hour high-resource plan to get to the bottom of a hit at a police station in the Eastern Cape.

Four balaclava-clad men shot and killed awaiting trial prisoner Simphiwe Maqungu in a cell at the Ngangelizwe Police Station in Mthatha on Sunday.

Sitole on Tuesday released the province’s top resources to focus on the case, exclusively for the next three days.

The masked gang stormed the Ngangelizwe station at around midnight on Sunday.

In what appears to be an organised hit, the men overpowered the on-duty police officers before turning their attention on a 38-year-old man in custody.

Maqungu, the awaiting trial prisoner, was due in court on Tuesday on illegal possession of firearm and ammunition charges.

The police's Vish Naidoo says Eastern Cape’s finest officers are on the case.

“We must do a maximum deployment of those resources so that no information, evidence or anything that’s crucial to a successful investigation is lost.”

The same station has, in recent years, had five service cars torched and in 2017, 23 firearms were stolen from the armoury.

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)