The police in the Eastern Cape paid tribute to Mufasa, a brave nine-year-old Rottweiler, who lost his battle against an aggressive cancer in a veterinary hospital in Walmer on Monday.
“In a world where bravery knows no bounds, we celebrate the selfless contributions of our K9 heroes and their handlers,” says col. Priscilla Naidu, spokesperson for the police. “We remember the sacrifice of a loyal and brave partner who stood side-by-side with his handler to protect our communities.”
For six years, Mufasa fought crime with his human partner, ao. Damian Theron.
“He displayed incredible bravery and a heart filled with love.”
Mufasa graduated from the Roodeplaat dog academy in 2016 with his first trainer, Sgt. Thembile Gaba. When Gaba was shot and injured in March 2017, Mufasa was transferred to Sgt. Theron who worked with him until his untimely demise.
“Up until his last night shift, on November 2, 2023, Mufasa actively chased suspects right across the subway. He was a true hero, a loyal comrade and a dedicated officer.”
He was diagnosed with cancer in June 2023, but was still able to continue working.
Theron also described him as “a true hero”. “One with four legs and an unwavering commitment to the SAPS. Mufasa was not only a member of the SAPS; he was family. He patrolled our streets with me and took on the most challenging tasks with extraordinary enthusiasm. Through long nights and difficult situations, his short stubby tail kept wagging and his commitment never wavered.”
Theron says Mufasa approached his diagnosis with the same tenacity as every other aspect of his service. “He worked tirelessly until his last day. He gave his all for the safety and well-being of our community.”
Mufasa was laid to rest at the canine unit in Forest Hills on Tuesday by his handler and fellow officers.
“We say goodbye to our beloved colleague. We remember the sacrifices he made, the lives he touched and the bravery he showed,” says Naidu. “Mufasa’s legacy, just like the four-legged colleagues before him, will continue to inspire us.”