Zikalala calls for calm in KZN following murder of Richards Bay Minerals manager

Gunmen opened fire on Nico Swart who was on his way to work on Monday morning.

FILE: KZN Premier Sihle Zikalala at a media briefing on 24 May 2020 on the province’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Picture: @kzngov/Twitter.

DURBAN - KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala has appealed for calm following the murder of a general manager for operational services at Richards Bay Minerals, owned by mining giant Rio Tinto.

Gunmen opened fire on Nico Swart who was on his way to work on Monday morning.

Police are calling on members of the public to assist them in finding the killers.

Zikalala has called on the police to make the investigation into Swart’s killing a priority.

- Richards Bay Minerals GM killed in hail of bullets while on way to work

He said only a swift arrest would send a clear message that violence would not be tolerated.

But, the Inkatha Freedom Party has expressed very little confidence in the premier, saying he had so far failed to find a lasting solution to issues in communities surrounding Richards Bay Minerals.

Spokesperson on community safety Blessed Gwala said: “It is clear that his attempts to resolve conflict, which has forced RBM to close in 2019 did not yield necessary interventions and more should have been done to resolve and end the problem.”

Richards Bay Minerals remains the largest taxpayer in KwaZulu-Natal with an annual contribution of R6.2 billion.

Authorities have called on residents to refrain from violence, emphasising the need to make investors feel safe.

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