NB: The story contains graphic details that can upset sensitive readers.

The 42 year old man accused of stabbing his 92 year old grandmother and eating her flesh has been formally charged with murder by the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court.

The man was badly beaten by community members after being caught following the incident at their home in Kwa-Dambuza, KwaZulu-Natal midlands.

Simphiwe Ndlela appeared briefly before the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court still dressed in hospital pyjamas.

Ndlela appeared confused as he took the dock inside Courtroom A. It is alleged he then ate the flesh of his grandmother, Judith Ndlela and also drank her blood.

During his appearance, the State told the court that some of his family members will be witnesses in this matter.

The courtroom was packed with senior citizens who called for no bail. Phathekile Ngcoya, one of the senior citizens, says that elder citizens are now living in fear.

“As grandmothers we are now scared. Our own grandchildren are raping us, they are killing us and eating our flesh. This is very painful, I weep for all elderly women who are being abused by their grandchildren. We raise and love these kids more than our own children.”

The case was also attended by provincial Health MEC Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo who is also the chairperson of the Men’s Forum. Dhlomo says Ndlela’s alleged actions are shocking which is why the hospital had to check if he had any traces of drugs in his system.

“The suspect was admitted in one of our facilities and I pleaded with the doctors there to consider taking bloods and check if he was on any drugs. It is unheard of a person behaving this way; it can’t be a normal behaviour to kill someone and take the organs and eat them. And also as a chairperson of the Men’s Forum, we want people to know that there are men out there who do care.”

Meanwhile Ndlela’s family members were in court but declined to speak to the media. The accused will reappear on the 20 February for formal bail application.