A 32-year-old constable stationed at Sea Point police station has died after being seriously wounded in a shooting at New Somerset Hospital in Cape Town on Saturday evening.
Addressing the media outside the hospital on Sunday morning, Western Cape Health MEC Nomafrench Mbombo said that during the shooting the police officer had been in another cubicle. She said that after hearing an altercation in the nearby ward, the officer went to check and was shot.
Police previously said the police officer had taken a 35-year-old suspect to New Somerset Hospital for medical attention when a man in the ward grabbed the firearm of the police officer and shot him in the head.
The provincial health department said it was believed that the alleged shooter was a patient who was ready for discharge.
It said it was unclear how the patient had managed to obtain the firearm, but it was being investigated. Two patients, aged 42 and 48, were also shot dead.
Mbombo said the shooting occurred during the handover between day and night shift staff.
Western Cape Community Safety and Police Oversight MEC Reagan Allen said he was glad that the South African Police Service (SAPS) had been quick to respond in securing the scene.
Responding to the shooting, the DA in the Western Cape expressed its condolences to the families and loved ones of the people who were murdered.
“Whilst the reasons for this attack are unknown at this point in time, it is beyond belief that a place of safety was targeted in this way, and we trust that the investigation will bring closure to those who were affected and that the perpetrators are held to account,” DA Western Cape spokesperson on health Wendy Kaizer-Philander said.
Mbombo said the alleged shooter was taken to Cape Town Central police station.
Police have yet to confirm the first court appearance of the shooter.