South Africa

Second suspect arrested for murder of activist Loyiso Nkohla

Loyiso Nkohla

Political activist Loyiso Nkohla was shot dead in Philippi in April.

The Hawks’ serious organised crime investigation team in Bellville arrested a second suspect in connection with the murder of former ANC Youth League activist Loyiso Mabandla Nkohla.

The Hawks arrested a 38-year-old suspect in Katlehong, Tshwane, on Monday. 

He is expected to appear in the Pretoria Central Magistrate’s Court on 14 November 2023.

Nkohla was killed in a hail of bullets at Philippi railway station on 17 April 2023. 

“It is believed that [Nkohla] was targeted for his role in talks to clear Metrorail’s Central Line, where families had built their homes,” said Hawks spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Siyabulela Vuku.

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First arrest

The Hawks arrested the first suspect, Zukisa Tshabile (38), on 27 October 2023. He appeared in the Athlone Magistrate’s Court and the matter was remanded until 15 February 2024 for further investigation.

Nkohla was a ANC Youth League activist. He was addressing a meeting in Philippi, with another former ANC councillor, Thembinkosi Pupa, when the shooting occurred.

Circumstances around the shooting

Nkohla, a former City of Cape Town councillor, was with another former ANC councillor, Thembinkosi Pupa, when the shooting occurred. They were representing the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) and engaged with shack dwellers who were occupying the train station.

He began his political career in earnest in 2002, when he was elected as a deputy secretary in an ANC branch in Nyanga, Cape Town. He was 20 years old.

READ ALSO: One man, four political parties: Who is Loyiso Nkohla really?

In 2008 he was elected deputy chair of the Dullah Omar region in Cape Town, and in 2011 he became an ANC councillor.

In 2013 he famously helped lead a protest against the controversial ‘bucket system’ in the DA-run metro. 

This would propel him to national fame for his and his comrades’ so-called poo protests.

It resulted in him being arrested for violating the Civil Aviation Act, after he and a few others were caught on camera dumping human waste at the Cape Town International Airport.

Additional reporting by Devina Haripersad