/ 30 August 2007

Hit man confesses to killing deputy mayor

An alleged hit man in the murder of Govan Mbeki municipality deputy mayor Thandi Mtsweni confessed to the killing in the Evander Magistrate’s Court in Mpumalanga on Thursday, the South African Broadcasting Corporation reported.

The alleged assassin is Sikhosiphe Gwala (42).

Govan Mbeki mayor Sipho Nkosi has been released on R10 000 bail after being accused of hiring assassins — including Gwala — to murder his deputy.

Prosecutors have said Mtsweni’s murder was linked to her investigations into corruption in the council.

On Thursday, investigating officer John Malupe told the court police did not have the murder weapon.

Malupe said police had been informed the individual in possession of the gun has since been shot dead in KwaZulu-Natal.

The court also heard three men allegedly hired to kill the deputy mayor tried twice before succeeding on their third attempt.

On the first occasion, killers found no one at the Mtsweni house.

On the second attempt, a person they spotted going into her house turned out not to be the deputy mayor.

On June 27 Mtsweni was shot three times in the yard of her house when she opened the kitchen door to take groceries inside.

Her husband was parking their car and her teenaged son was closing the gate at the time.

The killers fled without taking anything. — Sapa