Biyela was shot in the head and died at Inkosi Albert Luthuli Central Hospital on Monday.
She had worked for the health department since 2000. Her colleagues described her as a “very mature and hard working” nurse.
“She is said to have loved her job, always advocating for her patients and putting them first,” said Dhlomo.
Police spokesperson Col Thembeka Mbhele confirmed the fatal shooting. “The incident happened just after 8pm on Sunday. The family was watching television in different rooms when three unknown men entered the yard.
“One of the three had covered his face with a balaclava, while two reportedly did not. It could be that the other suspect knew the family, hence he covered his face,” she said.
Mbhele said the three robbers entered a room where Biyela was hiding behind a door. “When they caught her, she had a knife in her hand and stabbed one of the suspects, subsequently getting shot.”
Several cellphones and a Polo Vivo were stolen.
Mbhele said no arrests had been made and the motive of the incident was unknown.
Dhlomo is expected to visit the family on Thursday.
Biyela’s murder comes after the department recently launched its annual 16 Days of Activism campaign against femicide and other forms of gender-based violence.