Sanele Zwane (21), was sentenced to 20 years’ imprisonment for the murder of Makhosonke Mbambo (61), who was stabbed to death in Hammarsdale.
Zwane was also sentenced to 10 years for housebreaking, and 15 years for robbery all of which occurred on November 4, 2021.
He was sentenced at the Camperdown Regional Court on Friday after he pleaded guilty to all three charges and also implicated his co-accused, who is 17 years old.
The teenager is due back in court on June 28 to get a date for his appearance at the Pietermaritzburg high court.
Fence cut with borrowed pliers
In a plea statement, Zwane said on the day of the incident, he together with co-accused travelled from Hopewell, south of Pietermaritzburg to Hammarsdale using a taxi, as they knew that Mbambo had a car.
When they arrived, they waited until it was dark and they went to a friend to borrow a pair of pliers and a spanner.
Zwane said he then cut the fence to the yard and opened the windows with a knife. They entered the house and Mbambo was sleeping in the bedroom.
“When I shone my cell phone light on him, Mbambo started shouting and I jumped onto him as he lay on the bed.
His co-accused found the car keys and he took the car out of the garage.
“I left Mbambo on the bedroom floor and rushed out.
“We drove the car to Hopewell and it broke down. We then stripped various parts from the car as we intended to sell these,” said Zwane.
Zwane was then arrested the following day and charged.
Too scared to sleep
In a victim statement read out in court by State prosecutor Veraysha Moodley, Sibongile Mbambo, Mbambo’s wife, shared her emotional trauma suffered as a result of the crime, shock, fear, and distress.
She said the murder has affected her emotionally and psychologically and she has difficulty sleeping at night because of the stress. She said she was now scared in her own home since this incident happened especially because it happened in their bedroom.
“I continuously keep the doors locked both during the day and at night.
Two funerals in two weeks
“That is how much it has affected me psychologically. What hurts me the most is that my mother passed on October 27, 2021, and a few days later my husband passed while we were grieving my mother’s death and busy with the funeral arrangements.
“I have never felt so much pain in my entire life before.
“I had to bury the two people I loved the most in this world for two consecutive weekends.
“It is still painful. I wish that both the accused did not resort to killing my husband, [but] as an alternative took whatever they wanted in the house,” said Mbambo.
Mbambo said no human being deserved to be killed in such a gruesome manner.
Mbambo’s daughter, Sindisiwe Khanyile said she was the one who found her father in a pool of blood and that had affected her badly and led to stress and myalgia.
In her submission, Moodley said Zwane’s plea showed that there was careful planning and orchestration.
Handing down the sentencing, magistrate Linda Lewis said because Zwane had pleaded guilty and did not waste the court’s time and resources, he had shown remorse.