An investigation has been launched after three boys – two 10 year old and a nine-year-old – were found dead in an under-construction stormwater trench in Hammanskraal on Saturday afternoon

News24 previously reported it was not yet clear what had happened, but the deaths came after heavy rains in Tshwane on Friday and Saturday.

City of Tshwane spokesperson Thabo Mabaso said the children were found in the stormwater trench in Tambo Extension 1 near the traffic department.

He added the boys might have been playing in the area but the police investigation would focus on the cause of their death.

Upon hearing the news, Tshwane Roads and Transport MMC Dikeledi Selowa was immediately deployed to the scene by Mayor Randall Williams, where she engaged with emergency personnel, the police and local community.

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“While the investigation into the matter is ongoing, engagements with the local community indicate that the storm on Friday blew some barricades into the site which the young boys were then using to swim and play with in the trench,” Williams said.

Selowa also met with senior officials in the roads and transport department, regional executive director, site project manager and contractor late on Saturday evening.

“This morning, the site engineer, safety officers and the contractor have been summoned. The Tshwane Metro Police Department have been tasked to patrol and secure the site,” Williams added.

The mayor said the political leadership would also spend time visiting the families to offer their sympathies and condolences.

“The death of these young boys is a tragedy beyond measure. It is a devastating loss to the families, the community of Hammanskraal and the whole of Tshwane.

“I ask that all residents of the city take a moment today to offer their thoughts and prayers for the departed souls of these young boys and their families. Tshwane mourns for them. May their souls rest in peace,” Williams said.

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