‘Barbaric, cowardly’: KwaZulu-Natal paramedic shot dead inside ambulance while assisting gunshot victim

The ambulance that was shot at where Phumzile Dlamini died.

  • A KZN paramedic has been shot and killed while attending to patients in Estcourt.
  • Phumzile Dlamini, 40, was in the Mabhanoyini area when she was shot.
  • Her crewmate was also shot and remains in a critical condition.

A KwaZulu-Natal paramedic was shot and killed while attending to a shooting victim in the Estcourt area in the early hours of Monday morning.

Phumzile Dlamini, 40, and her crewmate were ambushed around 01:00 in the back of their ambulance while helping a patient who had been shot in the Mabhanoyini area.

Health MEC Nomagugu Simelane said Dlamimi and her colleague had already picked up the patient, who had sustained a fractured leg, when they had to detour to the home of the wounded man.

“After securing him, they suddenly heard gunshots coming from outside.”

She said Dlamini – an intermediate life support paramedic with 10-years’ service, and hailing from Greytown – was hit twice and died at the scene.

Phumzile Dlamini, 40, and her crewmate were allegedly ambushed around 01:00 in the back of their ambulance while attending to a patient who had been shot in the Mabhanoyini area.

More from the back of the ambulance where Phumzile

More from the back of the ambulance where Phumzile Dlamini was shot and killed.

Her crewmate sustained three gunshots and was rushed to hospital, where he remains in critical condition. None of the gunshots hit the two patients in the bullet-riddled ambulance.  

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Simelane said cartridges of high-calibre bullets were found at the scene.

She condemned the incident and passed on condolences to the Dlamini family. Simelane also called on law enforcement to bring the perpetrators to book:

An incident like this is spine-chilling. It is barbaric, cowardly and completely shocking. It’s a strong signal that something has gone horribly wrong in our society when innocent first responders, whose core responsibility is to save lives by helping those in emergency situations, get attacked and murdered like this. It’s outrageous.

Dlamini, a family woman, leaves behind a 21-year-old daughter, two sons aged 19 and 12, and her husband.

“What must her family do, now that her life has been snuffed out so suddenly, and so senselessly? We don’t even know whether her crewmate will survive this attack; or, if he does, how his life will be from now on. We can only wish him a full and speedy recovery, while our healthcare practitioners attend to him,” said Simelane.

Phumzile Dlamini, 40, who was shot and killed

Phumzile Dlamini, 40, who was shot and killed

She said this was not the first attack on paramedics.

“Incidents where paramedics get called out to emergency scenes, only to get robbed and stabbed, or subjected to various other forms of violence and hostility, have become commonplace. This really, really has to stop. That is why we are calling on our communities to isolate and expose these heartless thugs.

“These criminals are in our communities. Someone, somewhere, knows something about that they have done. That is why we are urging our people bring forward any information that might lead to the their arrest, so that they can be brought to book.

“We really don’t want a situation where our paramedics refuse to work at night, because then people whose lives can be saved will start dying. So, it’s in the interest of all of us that justice is served, and that paramedics are protected at all times.”

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Publish date : 2021-10-04 15:08:32

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