Police are offering a reward of up to R100 000 to anyone with information that would lead to the successful arrest of the person who murdered Johannesburg Central Cluster Commander, Major General Tirhani Maswanganyi.
The 52-year-old policeman’s body was found around 3am on Tuesday morning in a bushy area next to the road near Hammanskraal, North of Pretoria.
Police found Maswanganyi’s abandoned Isuzu bakkie, still with his police uniform and identification card, next to the R101 on Monday evening. This prompted a search which lead police to his body which was found in the area.
His half naked body was then found with hands and feet tied up. Two of his cell phones are also missing.
Police say there were no gunshot wounds to the body but there was blood on his face and chest.
Maswanganyi was last seen when he left home to go to work after 2pm on Monday.
Although there has been no arrest yet, Gauteng commissioner Lieutenant-General Mzwandile Petros told a media briefing on Wednesday morning that police are working around the clock and chasing up several leads.
“The passing of a member of the SAPS is one too many…its unacceptable and undermines our efforts in the fight against crime,” said Petros.
He appealed to communities to come forward with any information regarding the murder.
Petros did not want to speculate the motive of the murder thou there has been suggestions from the media that it was a hit, given Maswanganyi’s tough approach in the fight against crime corruption.
Petros also denied to link Maswanganyi’s death to a number of cases he was working on.
Maswanganyi was due to testify in a murder case this week, but Petros said this was not a case of organised crime.
Petros said they are waiting for a post mortem report on the exact cause of the death.
A team of senior detectives have been appointed to investigate the case.
The general also dismissed suggestions that Maswanganyi’s murder will send fear among police who have tough stance on criminals.
Petros said although the whole SAPS is saddened they have no choice to continue with the fight and that crime must be solved.
Maswanganyi who has over 30 years in the service has been described by many as a dedicated and selfless cop.
The community policing board chairperson Andy Mashaile pleaded to all the community policing forums to “listen, observe and get information and then forward it to the relevant station commanders”.
Police are appealing to members of the community who have witnessed or have any information to contact Crime Stop, 08600 10 111 and Crime Line SMS, 32211.- SAnews.gov.za