A guest house owned by one of the three men arrested in connection with the kidnapping and murder of Hillary Gardee was reportedly bombed with a petrol bomb on Thursday night, hours after she appeared in court when her case was awaiting further investigation moved.
The Insika Guest House, owned by Philemon Lukhele, was attacked around 10pm Thursday night.
A family member told TimesLIVE he received a call from neighbors who alerted him to a fire at the guest’s house.
“I rushed to the property and when we got there we found it was on fire. We started extinguishing while waiting for the fire department. We found gas all over the house and several bottles of gas,” he said.
According to the relative, neighbors said they saw a car parked in front of the property and the residents jumped over the wall, to get the gas in.
“They said shortly after they saw the fire and the occupants jumped over the wall and sped away in the car,” he said.
The property was used as housing for students at the University of Mpumalanga and it is believed that Gardee was allegedly held captive there and possibly raped and murdered.
Last month the university issued a statement announcing that it was reneging on its contract with the Guesthouse owner quit over allegations against him.
Dean of Students Paul Maminza said the university has accredited three Insika facilities to accommodate students. He said the students staying at the three facilities were told their accreditation had been canceled and they would have to move to other accredited accommodation.
The day before Gardee’s funeral, police raided the guest house and said it was a point of interest.
Mpumalanga Police Spokesman Brig Selvy Mohlala said the fire damaged a sofa, table and part of the kitchen unit.
“The police are investigating the cause of the fire. No arrests have been made yet.”
Support independent journalism by subscribing toThe Sunday Times. Only R20 for the first month.