Police divers retrieve body of missing man in Vaal River

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Villiers – A corpse of 26-year-old man has been retrieved from the Vaal River in Villiers on Friday, 01 October 2021, after he was reported a day earlier by his family.

The drowned man appears to have been missing for days is Joseph Thapelo Makhanye.

Police divers led by Lt Col Conrad Fouche were called to the river after police in Villiers were informed by the family that the clothes suspected to be Joseph’s were found near the river.

“A Bible with his name and address which was with the clothes assisted a herder to locate the family. At about 15:15, the body was taken out of the river by the divers,” Colonel Fouche revealed.

Retrieval of this lifeless body out of the river follows a missing person reported to Villiers SAPS by his family members on Thursday, 30 September 2021 at about 12:35.

It is alleged that he went missing on Monday 27 September 2021, in daytime, and the family did not report his missing as they thought he was roaming around Qalabotjha in Villiers which was not worrisome to them at that time.

“They assert that they only became worried when a cattle herder came to their house to report that he found the Bible of the missing person next to the river with all of his clothing also lying there,” elaborated Colonel Fouche.

He alleged that he gathered the details of the missing person from the front page of the Bible with his address as well.

Subsequently, family members went to the river where the missing person’s clothing were found and identified by them.

The deceased was taken to Sasolburg State Mortuary were a postmortem will be held to determine the cause of death. No foul play is suspected. An inquest docket is under investigation.

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