Pastor Proud Kanyungwe and his wife Belinda Tarisai Mukucha. (Supplied)
An apparent house robbery ended in a double tragedy when a couple were shot and killed at their home early on Thursday morning.
Alexandra police station spokesperson Captain Kholeka Mhlongo said the armed robbers used a concrete brick to break the front door and gained entry to the house.
When The Witness visited the house on Thursday, devastated family members relayed their shock at the senseless killing of a couple they described as “God fearing”.
Kanyungwe was a senior pastor at the Grace International Church on Pentrich Road.
A relative, Cornelius Huni, said they do not believe that this was a robbery.
“From the way it looks it was not just a robbery. If someone wants to come and break into your house, they do not make noise. If they make a noise, they do so for you to wake up so they can attack you,” he said.
Huni said the robbers came through the backyard and tried to gain entry through the garage roof.
“They removed some tiles and they couldn’t get access into the house. They then came to open the garage door and disconnected the alarm there.”
He said the robbers then forced open the security gate in the front and hit the door with concrete brick.
Kanyungwe woke up and went to investigate after hearing the noise.
“We assume when he saw the door opening he tried to fight off the robbers and was pushing the door while yelling out for help. One of the robbers managed to put the gun in past the door and shot him.”
The robbers then got into the house and shot Mukucha while she was walking out of her bedroom door. Her body was found lying in the passage.
Huni said one of the occupants who were in the house with the couple, also came to see what was happening.
“He switched on the lights in the dining room to see what was happening and came face to face with the robbers. The gun jammed when they tried to shoot him. They screamed at him and told him to f*** off and fled.”
The robbers made off with two cellphones and a laptop.
Huni said the couple, who were Zimbabwe nationals, had been married for more than 10 years and had two daughters.
“Their children saw all the drama especially when their mother got shot. The three-year-old keeps saying ‘my daddy is gone somewhere but my mommy has been shot dead’.”
He described the couple as very loving people.
“They were very reserved and they loved each other very much. We are all very shocked that they were killed in such a horrific manner.”
An assistant pastor at the Grace International Church, Destiny Mabika, said the church had lost its leaders.
“We were still learning a lot of things from them. They were very dedicated to the work of God. Nobody will ever close this void that they left.
“It is a very unfortunate situation and we hope the police make an arrest soon.”
A neighbour who asked not to be named said the level of aggression involved in the double murder had rocked the community.
“Why would they kill them to achieve something as little as stealing a cellphone and laptop?
“How do you justify such brutality? Two small children have been robbed of their parents.”
Pietermaritzburg police spokesperson Sergeant Mthokozisi Ngobese said police were investigating two counts of murder and robbery.
• In July, Maria Jacoba Greyling (63), was found murdered at her home in Bellevue near Hayfields.
Greyling’s body was discovered lying in her garden with a wound to her head and a gash on the left side of her face.
Alexandra police said no arrests have been made yet in connection with her murder.