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South African Indian politician shot dead in Durban

Rajah Naidoo, an independent town councillor was shot dead near a school.

india Updated:

A local politician of Indian origin, Rajah Naidoo, was shot dead here soon after attending a meeting to discuss pollution damage at a primary school.

Naidoo, an independent town councillor and chairman of the Merebank Residents' Association, was shot dead near the school grounds on Friday.

"Naidoo was confronted by two people near the school grounds. A shot was fired and he died at the scene," said Phindile Hadebe, police spokesperson.

"At this stage we don't know what the circumstances of the murder are. Our Serious and Violent Crime Unit is investigating the killing," she said.

Meanwhile, the local Indian community has reacted with shock and anger at his murder.

Ebrhaim Shaik, chairman of the Merebank Crisis Centre, said he had attended a meeting with Naidoo and other local leaders early on Friday to discuss the pollution of the school grounds.

"We are shocked and angry as the crime rate is taking its toll on the community.

The crime rate is very high here with hijackings and robberies taking place every day," he said, adding "we don't know how we are going to solve the problem? The criminals have taken over our streets."

Desmond D'sa, another local leader and chairman of the Durban South Environmental Network, said "The crime is escalating out of control but we don't know what to do.

These criminals believe they can commit murder and get away with it."

Naidoo was only elected to the Durban Municipality last year after standing as an independent candidate. He trounced a candidate of the ANC to win the seat.

First Published: Feb 17, 2007 18:16 IST