KZN Police have launched a manhunt after a trucker was shot dead in his truck on the N3 freeway in KwaZulu-Natal.

60-year-old Ronnie Govender from Phoenix, was shot execution style in his mouth in Estcourt at the Midway offramp.

He sustained two gunshot wounds to his mouth and stab wounds to his legs.

The motive for the attack is unknown.

KZN police spokesperson Thembeka Mbhele confirmed that they were still investigating and no arrests had been made.

The father of two worked as a long-distance truck driver for Visham Clothing in Durban.

Govender was attacked while on his way to deliver goods to Lesotho on February 24.

His brother-in-law, Dave Pramraj, who is also a truck driver, accompanied him in another vehicle.

Govender’s brother, Dennis, said Pramraj was about 20km ahead of Govender.

“At 10.47pm, he contacted my brother to find out where he was. Ronnie told him he was heading towards Estcourt. A few minutes later, Dave tried calling my brother again but there was no answer.”

He said motorists heard gunshots on the N3 freeway and informed staff at a nearby garage.

They contacted the police, who then notified the owner of the company that Govender had been killed.

“Dave, who’d been trying to call Ronnie, was told what happened and called me at 3.30am on the Tuesday to tell me what happened.”

He said he believed the attackers flagged Govender down to stop the truck, before shooting and stabbing him.

“His body was lying next to the truck. Only his cellphone and wallet were missing.”

Dennis said their mother, and Govender’s wife, Sharon, children and grandchildren were struggling to come to terms with their loss.

“What happened is not fair. We want justice.”

Vijay Harichand, the owner of Visham Clothing, said Govender worked for the company for about three years.

“He was an excellent man, a father figure to all of us. He lived with integrity and was a mentor to younger employees. Our team and customers are in mourning. We are distraught. It’s difficult to accept that he was taken from us in such a tragic manner.”

Govender’s funeral was held at the Clare Estate Crematorium last Thursday.