“He strangled the victim when he realised he was still breathing and then dumped his body in a river.”

The two men face a murder charge and were remanded in custody by the Kriel magistrate’s court on Monday. They will return to court for a formal bail application on May 10.

The police raised concern after the incident, saying people were resorting to violence to resolve disputes.

“Some even go to the extent of hiring izinkabi [hitmen] to eliminate their opponents. This deadly behaviour has a negative impact, affects many families and puts the lives of others at risk. Anger, jealousy and greed seem to be the root cause of this problem. People are urged to tolerate each other and settle disputes in an amicable manner,” said Hlathi.

Acting provincial police commissioner Maj-Gen Thulani Phahla said society faced a “psychological challenge of uncontrollable anger”.

“They no longer communicate amicably to resolve differences but use deadly violence instead and this is a matter all should be concerned about,” said Phahla.

TimesLIVE

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