The Western Cape High Court is expected to hear key testimony on Tuesday in the trial of two men accused of killing an elderly couple in their home in January 2019.
On Monday, Lwazi Ntsibantsiba and Gcinile Ngcobela pleaded not guilty to two counts of murder and a charge of robbery with aggravating circumstances. They are accused of killing Rugeya and Riedwaan Addinall, both 82, in their Ottery home on 5 January 2019.
Ngcobela was the couple’s gardener. The court was informed that new fingerprints were needed to be taken from Ngcobela because he missed an appointment with the investigating officer and prioritised a job opportunity instead.
The State asked Judge Bryan Hack if this could be sorted out on Monday.
Hack told Ngcobela that the Criminal Procedure Act set out how trials should be conducted to ensure justice.
“And there is a specific revision that deals with fingerprints and Parliament has given authority to the State to take [or] check fingerprints during the course of the trial. It is in your best interests to ensure they are correct,” he told the accused.
But Ngcobela showed the court his swollen hand and told Hack that he had fallen.
“There’s a lot of things that are happening and there are allegations that things were found on me. My hand is swollen but there’s a lot that’s not clear to me,” he told the court.
In the end, his fingerprints were taken.
It is alleged that Ngcobela and Ntsibantsiba tied ligatures around Rugeya Addinall and forced her to eat rat poison. Her husband was strangled.
The men were arrested four days later.