The woman accused of plotting to murder her 62-year-old mother for an R80,000 life insurance payout has been denied bail, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) has said.
Bathobile Penelope Mathunywa, 39, who allegedly planned the murder of Wanter Dlamini with her sister, Nonhlanhla Mathunywa, 30, appeared in the Barberton Magistrate’s Court in Mpumalanga on Friday where her bail application was refused.
She appeared alone in court.
NPA spokesperson Monica Nyuswa said the State had opposed bail because of the seriousness of the charges that Bathobile faced, adding bail was also denied because of safety concerns following an outcry from the community.
The sisters were arrested following the discovery of their mother’s body.
Mpumalanga police made a breakthrough by arresting another suspect who was allegedly involved in the murder last Thursday.
Ntombizodwa Nombuso Ndwandwa, 41, who was in hiding, was arrested and also appeared in court on Monday where her case was postponed to March 6.
Police spokesperson Brigadier Leonard Hlathi previously said Dlamini had been invited by her youngest daughter, Nonhlanhla, for a visit on January 6.
Hlathi claimed information indicated Nonhlanhla had also roped in Ndwandwa and two male friends, Stanley Mashikeng and Moses Mosemba, who allegedly kidnapped, assaulted and gang-raped her while Nonhlanhla and Ndwandwa were holding her. One of the men handed himself over last Friday, while the other suspect handed himself over on Monday.
All the accused remain in custody and will appear in court again on March 6.