National 22.8.2016 10:28 am

Modise church elders robbed of R1.3m worth of tithes

ZUURBEKOM, SOUTH AFRICA - FEBRUARY 12: Members of the International Pentecost Holiness Church celebrate the life of comforter Glayton Modise on February 12, 2016 in Zuurbekom, South Africa. The 75-year old passed away on Tuesday at the Morningside Mediclinic after a short illness, he was laid to rest on Friday. (Photo by Gallo Images / Sowetan / Veli Nhlapo)

ZUURBEKOM, SOUTH AFRICA - FEBRUARY 12: Members of the International Pentecost Holiness Church celebrate the life of comforter Glayton Modise on February 12, 2016 in Zuurbekom, South Africa. The 75-year old passed away on Tuesday at the Morningside Mediclinic after a short illness, he was laid to rest on Friday. (Photo by Gallo Images / Sowetan / Veli Nhlapo)

It is suspected the robbery that hit the embattled IPHC church was an inside job.

Church elders from the International Pentecost Holiness Church (IPHC), the second biggest church in South Africa, were robbed of R1.3 million in cash by 12 armed gunmen in what is suspected to be an inside job, according to a report by Sunday World over the weekend.

The incident, which reportedly happened on August 7, on their way to deposit the money at a bank at OR Tambo International Airport, is said to have turned tragic when the unknown gunmen travelling in three cars pounced on them and took the cash and killed church member Mashudu Mulaudzi on the Golden Highway in Soweto.

“All truth will come out after the oral hearing in September. We’ve worked hard to ensure our comforter’s legacy remains intact,” said IPHC spokesperson Freddie Ramaphakela.

Gauteng police have confirmed the armed robbery and murder, and investigations are said to be ongoing, with no arrests made as yet.

A spokesperson for the church, which was founded by its late leader Glayton Modise, said its leadership would look into why the services of a professional security company were not used to transport the cash and other issues related to the robbery at an oral hearing next month.

The IPHC has been the news recently following the death of Modise in February, which began a bitter leadership battle between his son Tshepiso and church elders who do not want him to take the robes from his father.

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