Brotherly love appeared to evaporate this week at Seven Angels Ministries in Ngcobo, Eastern Cape, scene of a shoot-out that left seven people dead.
Benjamin Mancoba, one of four surviving “angel” brothers who led the church, blamed Thandazile, one of three brothers killed by police nine days ago, for the murder of five police officers and a former soldier three days earlier.
Benjamin told the Sunday Times he had seen Thandazile carrying a rifle, which he now believed was stolen from the police. He and his brothers labelled Thandazile a black sheep, saying he was also known as Chester, named after a gangster character in the TV series Yizo Yizo.
Six congregants at the brothers’ church were arrested this week, including “angel” Phuthumile Mancoba. Church leader Banele Mancoba said his brother did not need a lawyer because “we do not use lawyers, we use the Holy Spirit”.
But Phuthumile asked for a lawyer when he appeared in court on Thursday. He is charged with murder, attempted murder and possession of an unlicensed firearm.
Investigators, led by the Hawks, brought handcuffed suspects to the Mancoba home on Thursday in a search for evidence.
Banele looked on, flanked by brothers Benjamin and Ephraim, who are twins. He asked his brothers:[tooltip id=”4500c2f113202943ff1ae30d00c9d4ac”] [/tooltip]“Have you guys decided when to go [die]? Twins have to go together.” Both said they had yet to decide.
One of the police officers who died in the first Ngcobo shooting was buried on Friday at his home in Zimbane Location near Mthatha on Friday. The funeral was attended by a number of colleagues and the province’s police leaders.
Provincial commissioner General Liziwe Ntshinga said they would scrape off writings on the rocks on the mountain behind the controversial church and initiate a legal process to close the Angel Ministries.
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