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Mpumalanga man AWOL after decomposed body found in ceiling

Mpumalanga police are looking for a man after they found a decomposed body in the ceiling of a house in the maize farming town of Balfour.

Police believe that Thabo Silas Tsotetsi may have information that can assist in the investigation.

Complaint of bad odour  

The gruesome discovery was made on Tuesday, around 11am, when police responded to a complaint about a foul odour from a house in Minaar Street at Balfour.

The complaint was made by a concerned woman, who told the responding police officers that she had moved into the house about a month ago, as the house belongs to her boyfriend.

The police proceeded to inspect the house, to try and locate the source of the malodorous smell. 

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According to Brigadier Selvy Mohlala, the police inspected the ceiling, which had a trapdoor.

“At first, the ceiling trapdoor did not open nor show clearly what was inside, however, police proceeded to the next room and broke the ceiling where they discovered a human body wrapped with some clothes,” said Mohlala.

They immediately called the emergency services to the scene.

According to police, at the time of the discovery, the body was in a stage of actively decaying.

When assessing the body, it was discovered through nail polish, shoes and other features that the body is that of a woman.

The women’s partner AWOL

“Upon further questioning by police, the woman indicated that she too was concerned about the odour and even asked her partner about it, but he responded that it was due to rats,’ added Mohlala.

The woman’s partner was not at home and has been AWOL since Saturday, when he left the house saying that he is going to make account payments.

An investigation into a murder case is currently underway and the identity of the body is yet to be determined.

“This is really heartbreaking, for a woman to be murdered and her body being concealed in such a manner. We strongly suspect that this is another gender-based violence incident but we hope and trust that anyone behind this murder will feel the full might of the law,” said Mpumalanga Provincial Commissioner Semakaleng Daphney Manamela.

Anyone who has information regarding the whereabouts of Thabo Silas Tsotetsi or any information that can help in the investigation can contact Detective Sergeant Moeketsi on 072 351 3801.

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