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2022/04/19      |  Written By:  Lieutenant Colonel A Funani   |   Province:  North West

POTCHEFSTROOM: 15 April 2022: The Provincial Police Commissioner of North West, Lieutenant General Sello Kwena, congratulated the Provincial Anti-Gang Unit for securing 18 years imprisonment sentence on Wednesday, 13 April 2022. This is after the Stilfontein Magistrates’ Court sentenced Tjabaka Ramarou (21) to 18 years for murder, attempted murder and contravention of Section 49 of the  Immigration Act, 2002 (Act No. 13 of 2002)

It was reported at the time of the incident that Ramarou who was operating as one of illegal miners commonly known as zama zamas, went to a mine in Stilfontein on Sunday, 19 April 2020. He found other illegal miners busy cleaning products that they sourced from underground. Ramarou and his companion were armed with firearms, ordered two other Zama-Zamas to leave their products. When the two victims failed to obey their instruction,  Ramarou and his friend took out firearms and shot the pair. Likhama Matela (33) died on the scene while his friend Reekeditswe Swartbooi (33) escaped with injuries and was taken to hospital for medical attention. Police were called and a case of murder and attempted murder were opened. The accused and his accomplice fled to Lesotho. However, the long arm of the law caught up with Ramarou seven months later after information was received that he is back in the country. He was denied bail and has been in custody since his arrest.

He was sentenced as follows: 
1) Murder: 12 years imprisonment
2) Attempted murder: 5 years imprisonment
3) Contravention of Immigration Act: 1 year imprisonment
The accused was declared unfit to possess a firearm in terms Section 103 of the Firearms Control Act, 2000 (Act No. 60 of 2000)
The Provincial Commissioner thanked members of the community for cooperating with the police in ensuring that the accused was arrested and sentenced.