A KwaMsane man is lucky to be alive after narrowly escaping an attempt on his life.
This after the gunmen allegedly mistook the victim for the main witness in an upcoming murder trial, Zululand Observer reports.
The attempted murder occurred at 6.45am on Friday at Mtholo Reserve near Nhlazane River, KwaMsane, KwaZulu-Natal.
According to police reports, Mvikeleni Zulu, 26, left home and when he was 500 metres down the road, three armed men appeared from behind a water reservoir.
Armed with a rifle and pistols, the men shot at Zulu, causing him to lose control of his vehicle and hit a tree.
“During the shootout, Zulu sustained one wound after a bullet entered his back and exited his stomach,” said KwaMsane SAPS spokesperson Captain Jabulani Mdletshe.
“He managed to flee the scene and take refuge at a nearby homestead.
“Zulu’s vehicle was badly damaged, with about 19 bullet holes.”
He was treated at KwaMsane clinic and transferred to Hlabisa Hospital for further medical treatment.
No arrests have yet been made.
“We ask anyone who might have witnessed the incident, or who might have knowledge about it, to contact KwaMsane detective branch commander Lt Colonel Xolani Mbhele on 035 5519008 or 083 3591420.”
KwaMsane police are under the suspicion that the men were looking for the daughter of the late Mkhawuleni Aaron Buthelezi, a taxi owner who was shot dead at Nhlazane river in 2013.
One suspect was arrested for his murder and in 2015 convicted at Mtunzini High Court.
He received one life sentence for murder, 15 years for attempted murder, a further eight for possession of an unlicensed firearm and another eight for possession of ammunition.
His two accomplices were arrested at a later stage, after having committed another two murders.
They are due to appear before the high court on 7 May.
Buthelezi’s daughter is the main witness in her father’s murder case.