Judge disputes claims Senzo Meyiwa was left to die
A neighbour claimed when he found Meyiwa inside the Khumalo house, the wounded player had not received any medical assistance.
Judge Ratha Mokgoatlheng is presiding over the Senzo Meyiwa murder trial in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria. Picture: Gallo Images/Phill Magakoe
The presiding judge in the trial of the five men accused of murdering former Bafana Bafana captain Senzo Meyiwa has disputed claims by the defence the soccer star was left to die.
Senzo Meyiwa murder trial
Defence lawyer for accused number five, Advocate Zandile Mshololo, questioned state witness Khaya Ngcatshe on Wednesday about the presence of the Khumalo sisters – Kelly Khumalo and her sister, Zandile Gumede – at Meyiwa’s side after he was shot.
Meyiwa was fatally shot on 26 October 2014 during an alleged botched robbery at the family home of his then-lover, Khumalo, in Vosloorus, east of Johannesburg.
Ngcatshe, who was Khumalo’s neighbour at the time, testified for a second day, recounting the events of the night when the footballer lost his life. He claimed when he found Meyiwa inside the Khumalo house, the wounded player had not received any medical assistance.
Advocate Mshololo probed further, questioning whether any Khumalo family member was present to help Meyiwa or if he was left alone to succumb to his injuries.
However, Judge Ratha Mokgoatlheng intervened strongly, disapproving of Mshololo’s line of inquiry.
The judge clarified: “Zandile said she went to MaPhiri [their neighbour]. Let’s not adulterate the evidence by stating non-essential information that we can never, ever testify to. She [Zandile] said she panicked, she froze, she came out, she went to MaPhiri… she couldn’t even dial 10111, and now you’re telling us he was left there to die.”
The trial continued with Ngcatshe concluding his testimony on Wednesday.
Another neighbour takes the stand
Another neighbour of the Khumalos, Nthabiseng Mokete, was called upon to shed light on the events of the ill-fated night when Meyiwa lost his life.
Mokete testified on the night of the tragedy she was staying at her sister’s house, opposite the Ngcatshe residence.
Mokete and her friend, Yolanda, were sitting in Yolanda’s car parked on the street, with Yolanda’s one-year-old child also in the vehicle.
According to Mokete’s testimony, they heard a loud bang, which they believed to be a gunshot. Shortly after, they saw a person fleeing from the Khumalo house in the direction of a nearby park.
The person appeared to be a lean-built man wearing pants. The time of these events was after 8pm on that fateful day.
“I got scared and said to Yolanda that is a sound of a gun. A few moments later, a person went past the car. That person was running towards the park,” Mokete said.
As they were discussing the sound, they heard another gunshot and two other people ran in the direction of the park.
Fearing for their safety, Mokete suggested they leave the car. Before they could do so, Yolanda opened the car door to check the situation outside. By that time, the people they had seen earlier had already run down the street, and a third gunshot was fired.
Mokete and Yolanda then decided to leave the car and found Khumalo’s sister, Zandile, desperately screaming for help and urging them to call an ambulance for Meyiwa. Zandile rushed towards their parked car as they prepared to leave.
“I remember her [Zandile] telling me to call the ambulance because she saw that I was coming out of the car.
“She screamed saying ‘call the ambulance, Senzo has been shot’. As she was screaming, she was approaching the gate towards where my friend had parked her car.”
The trial continues on Thursday.