/ 8 April 2022

Defence is ready for the trial of men accused of killing Senzo Meyiwa

Caf Champions League Final 1st Leg: Orlando Pirates V Al Ahly
Senzo Meyiwa. File photo by Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images/Getty Images

Just after the launch of a documentary series about the brutal October 2014 killing of former Orlando Pirates and Bafana Bafana captain Senzo Meyiwa on Netflix, the advocate representing four men accused of the murder has indicated his readiness to begin their  defence.

On Monday, 11 April, Muzikawukhulelwa Sibiya, Bongani Sandiso Ntanzi, Mthobisi Prince Ncube and Mthokoziseni Ziphozonke Maphisa will go on trial in the Pretoria high court on charges of murder, attempted murder, armed robbery, possession of firearms without a licence and the possession of ammunition.

They were arrested in October 2020, six years after Meyiwa was gunned down inside the family home of his girlfriend, Kelly Khumalo, on a warm Sunday evening in the Ekurhuleni township of Vosloorus in Gauteng. Khumalo is an award-winning singer. 

Advocate Dan Teffo, who will be defending all the accused after being accepted as their legal representative at the last court sitting on 17 March, told the Mail & Guardian that he was ready to begin his defence when the trial starts on Monday. 

At the last sitting, Teffo was instructed to indicate to the court, by 28 March, whether the defence would be ready to begin trial on 11 April. This was after he said he had made representations to the provincial director of public prosecutions in the National Prosecuting Authority. 

“Rest assured that the court will be informed accordingly in writing on or before 28 March about the readiness or the defence, against all odds,” Teffo said at the time. 

On Friday, Teffo said he was ready to begin trial on Monday and had signalled that to the high court. His clients have indicated they will plead not guilty. 

The trial begins against the backdrop of a new five-episode Netflix series, Senzo: Murder of a Soccer Star, which commenced on 7 April, tracing the days and circumstances before and after Meyiwa’s killing. 

The series has reignited the conspiracy theories about the murder, including that Khumalo, her sister Zandi Khumalo and Longwe Twala, the son of music producer Sello “Chicco” Twala — who were in the house when Meyiwa was shot — are hiding the truth about that evening’s fatal shooting. 

Lobby group Afriforum, through advocate Gerrie Roux, said on Friday that the organisation has a watching brief on behalf of Ntombifuthi Meyiwa, Meyiwa’s mother, as well Zama and Nomalanga Meyiwa, both of whom are the former sports star’s sisters.