Inside Senzo Meyiwa accused’s arrest: Ammunition, magazine found in his room
Muzikawukhulelwa Sibiya was arrested in Tembisa on 30 May 2020.
Accused one, Muzikawukhulelwa Sibiya (left) and accused two Bongani Ntanzi in the Senzo Meyiwa murder trial at Pretoria High Court on 17 July. Picture: Gallo Images/Phill Magakoe
The Senzo Meyiwa murder trial on Tuesday heard the details surrounding the arrest of one of the five men accused of killing the former Orlando Pirates goalkeeper.
A trial-within-a-trial continued in the Gauteng High Court in Pretoria, with the state calling its third witness of the day to give evidence.
Constable Jabulani Buthelezi testified in relation to accused one Muzikawukhulelwa Sibiya’s arrest on 30 May 2020.
The court previously heard that Sibiya was assaulted at Diepkloof Police Station when he made an alleged confession statement regarding Meyiwa’s murder on the night of his arrest.
In his evidence-in-chief, Buthelezi, who has been a member of the Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Police Department (EMPD) since 2003, told the court he received a call from Sergeant Mogola on 30 May about an arrest that had to be made.
The witness explained he met Mogola alongside Constable Sadiki at the Tembisa Police Station, where they received a warrant of the arrest for a suspect.
He said they waited for a while before receiving information about the whereabouts of Sibiya in Tembisa.
Buthelezi said upon arrival at a house where Sibiya was, they found the suspect with another person inside the yard and executed a “tactical takedown”.
“In tactical takedown, we use authoritative words so that the suspect’s mind is confused. We then requested them to lie down. We already know of the person we were looking for, but we still searched them and tried to get their names.”
The EMPD officer informed the court that the suspect did not show resistance during the arrest.
“I then asked if he had his ID with him. He said his ID book is at where he stayed. He said the place was not very far. I then informed Muzikawukhulelwa of his rights. I told him he has the right to legal representation and if he cannot afford a lawyer the state would provide a lawyer for him.
“I told him of his right to remain silent and whatever he says may be used against him in a court of law. I also told him he has a right to a doctor of his own choice or alternatively he can be provided with a state doctor,” Buthelezi continued.
Watch the trial below:
Plastic bag of ammunition
Buthelezi said he then handcuffed Sibiya from the back and went to his place.
“He directed us there.”
The witness said they found ammunition as well as a magazine inside Sibiya’s room.
“Where I was looking, there was a plastic [bag] that was hanging. I pulled it and attached to it was another plastic. When I opened the plastic, I discovered unused ammunition, one magazine and one cleaning rod.”
He said the suspect confirmed he did not have the licence for it.
“I asked him if he had a licence and he said no. I then informed him that I would arrest him for these live rounds [of ammunition]. I also invited Sergeant Mogola, who was outside, to come in. Sergeant Mogola placed everything I found in the evidence bag,” Buthelezi said, adding that Sibiya’s ID was eventually found.
The EMPD officer said the other person who was with Sibiya was released.
Lead investigator arrives
From Sibiya’s shack, the police went to a hostel to look for a gun.
He says when they got to the hostel in Tembisa, looking for Sibiya’s friend, they were told that he died many years ago.
The officers then proceeded to the hostel in Vosloorus.
“When we heard that the person had passed away, Sergeant Mogola suggested we go to Vosloorus.”
He said he called for backup because they were entering an unfamiliar place.
Buthelezi said Mogola informed him that the lead investigator of Meyiwa’s murder, Brigadier Bongani Gininda, was on his way as they waited at the Vosloorus police station.
Upon Gininda’s arrival, the investigating officer had a conversation with Sibiya.
“We did not know what was discussed, but what came out the conversation was that we were going to Aeroton police office. The suspect was taken into the offices in Aeroton. That’s when we went to the car.”
He said after a while, they went with Sibiya and Sergeant Mogola to Pretoria for his detention.
He said he again informed the accused of his rights in isiZulu before he was put in custody.
“There’s a form called notice of rights that we fill in. After filling that form if he was no complaints then he signs it. The original form is handed over to the accused and the copy is placed inside the docket.”
The trial will resume on Wednesday.