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Three voting stations in KwaZulu-Natal fail to open on first day of final voter registration weekend
18 September 2021, 6:19 PM

Three voting stations in KwaZulu-Natal were not able to open and operate on the first day of the voter registration. The affected voting stations are in Msunduzi Municipality’s Ward 15.  

IEC KwaZulu-Natal Electoral Operations Manager Ntombifuthi Masinga says community protests resulted in these stations being closed the entire day.

“Registration kicked off in 4 940 voting stations in the province. We, however, experienced pockets of service delivery protests in some parts of the province resulting in some voting stations having to open late. I think the worst case scenario is in Msunduzi Municipality, where three voting stations remained closed for the rest of the day, as the members of the SAPS, the IEC and community leaders tried to engage the community to enable the voting registration process to continue. We are hopeful that by tomorrow, those issues would have been dealt with and the people of Ward 15 in Msunduzi Municipality can be able to go to the voting stations.” 

Meanwhile, the Constitutional Court judgment in the matter between the Electoral Commission and the Democratic Alliance has been delayed. The decision was expected to be made at 3pm this afternoon.  

In a statement, the ConCourt says the judgment will be now be delivered later this afternoon or early this evening.  

The official opposition has made an application against the IEC’s re-opening of the submission of the candidates’ list for the local government elections. It says the decision was meant to help the ANC after it failed to register and submit lists of names of its would-be councillors in over 90 municiplaities. 

Speaking during the voter registration campaign in Soweto, ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa says they will abide by the court’s decision.

LGE 2021 | ANC president Ramaphosa leads the election campaign with NEC members:
 

IFP calls on political parties to ensure peace ahead of elections
18 September 2021, 3:35 PM

The Inkatha Freedom Party has called on other political parties to ensure that there is peace and stability in KwaZulu-Natal ahead of the November 1st elections. The party says people should be allowed to practice their democratic right to vote by participating freely in the elections.  

IFP president Velenkosini Hlabisa monitored voter registration in various townships on the north of Durban. This is Hlabisa’s first election at the helm of the party since he took over from IFP founder, Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi.  

The party says it is confident that KwaZulu-Natal will have a free and fair local government election despite the IEC treating every part of the province as a hotspot. The province has had series of violent incidents since the start of the July unrest that also affected parts Gauteng.  

In the build-up to almost every election, the province usually experiences political violence. But the IFP says political leaders need to continue preaching the message of peace.  

Hlabisa visited the party’s strongholds to monitor voter registration.

“Do not impose on people which political party they shouldn’t vote for. Do not make people have free will to decide. We are very confident. In a number of by-elections the spirit that we saw political parties contesting and singing together, that is what we encourage. That is what will make our democracy to mature and grow as citizens our country.”

In 2011, the party lost several municipalities attributing it to internal fights which gave birth to the formation of the NFP. But in 2016, the IFP regained its momentum by replacing the DA  in becoming an official opposition in KwaZulu-Natal.  

Hlabisa says they plan to root out corruption, fight crime and create much-needed jobs.

“Our youth have accorded that they must be part of the November 1 elections. They must voice their wish by removing the corrupt government and put the party they can trust which is the IFP. They must remove lazy councilors who look after themselves and put IFP councilors who will be their servants. We commit (as the) IFP that we will hold our municipalities and we will hold our councilors accountable. Any councilor who will not be living to that standard, we are not afraid to recall or to remove that particular councilor.”

The IFP also admitted that this year’s elections will not be easy due to the pandemic.  

“The 2021 local government election will be a difficult one. We urge people to go out and register so they can be able to remove councillors they do not want.”

The party has also expressed it satisfaction with the number of young people who have registered to vote.  

Over 1.1 million youngsters are registered to vote in KZN. 

LGE 2021 | IFP President Velenkosini Hlabisa leads election campaign in Lindelani:

Circumstances surrounding Zanele Motha’s death dominate proceedings in Ndlovu’s cross-examination
17 September 2021, 3:36 PM

The death of Nomia Ndlovu’s niece, Zanele Motha, has on Friday afternoon dominated the prosecution’s cross-examination of the former police officer, who stands accused of listing family members on insurance policies and later killing them to cash in on the policies.  

Motha, one of the six family members Ndlovu is accused of killing, was killed in June 2016 and Ndlovu benefitted R120 000 in policy payouts following her death. 

Motha, who stayed with Ndlovu at the time, was admitted to the Tembisa Hospital the first time on the 13th of June 2016. On the 14th, she was released into her care after she had been found injured on the side of the road in Kempton Park.  

In Ndlovu’s version, Motha who was in a wheelchair when she was discharged from hospital on the 14th, could not walk and only started walking with difficulty the following day at home.  

“I was with her and I saw her. She could not walk,” says Ndlovu. 

The version is, however, in contradiction to Dr Ipeleng Nku’s version who testified before the Palm Ridge Magistrate’s Court that there was no way Motha could have been unable to walk as she did not sustain any internal injuries.  

Ndlovu has told the court that no one else visited her niece at home on the 15th while she was under her care.  

“It was only me and her.”

She says it was only late in the evening that she heard Motha coughing from the other room and upon arrival, she found her niece in a kneeling position. She says it was then that she decided to take Motha back to hospital. 

Motha was declared dead on arrival.  

The prosecution asked to stand down the cross-examination into circumstances surrounding Motha’s death. On this note, the court adjourned until Monday, where the matter will now be heard at the Johannesburg High Court.  

Earlier, the prosecution began the day by focusing on Ndlovu’s admission on 21 July 2021 to conspiracy to murder her sister, Joyce Ndlovu and her five children. While Ndlovu admitted to remembering that admission, she was quick to point out that it was not an admission to commit murder but to travel to Bushbuckridge together with Njabulo Kunene and Mr Dlamini.   

“I don’t remember conspiring with Mr Dlamini to kill anyone,” she says.  

She says her reason for travelling to Bushbuckridge with the two men was to introduce Kunene to a traditional healer.   

Ndlovu, who can be seen and heard in a video telling Mr Dlamini to burn Joyce and her five kids leaving behind no witnesses so that they could cash in on insurance policies, says everything she said in that video was something Kunene had told her to say so that Dlamini could provide transport to Bushbuckridge.    

“Before I got into the car, I had a short discussion with Vincent Kunene. Vincent told me what to say,” says Ndlovu. 

Ndlovu is accused of the murders of Witness Madala Homu who was murdered in March 2012, cashing in R131 000 from insurance policies; Audrey Ndlovu killed in 2013 – Ndlovu cashing in R717 000; her boyfriend Morris Mabasa – cashing in R416 000; her niece Zanele Motha who died in June 2016 – cashing in R120 000; her nephew Mayeni Mashaba who died in 2017; as well as Mashego who was murdered in January 2018. 

According to Ndlovu, she listed the family members in her insurance policies so that she would not be burdened in the event of their death as it had been the case before. The prosecution put it to her that, that was not the case, pointing at the evidence of Homu’s sister, Eva, who told the court that she only contributed R200 towards burial expenses, despite benefiting just over R131 000 in policy payouts following Homu’s murder.

Ndlovu has insisted she gave the family R15 000 from the first policy payout of R131 000 and also bought food and pay for her travel expense to Tzaneen where Homu was buried.

I may not be in a position to name them item by item, but I bought things, spend money on travelling. I also tried to contact them and tell them about the money that was paid out six months later. But they didn’t take my calls. I ended up spending the money, using that money for myself. Because there was no communication and it was money that was in my account, gradually, I used it all.”   

Nomia Ndlovu explains registration of cousin as spouse on insurance policy documents
17 September 2021, 1:29 PM

Former police officer Nomia Ndlovu sought to explain why her cousin, Madala Homu, who was murdered in 2012, was registered as a spouse on her policy documents instead of cousin.

Ndlovu is accused of the murders of six of her family members between 2012 and 2018. 

Homu, who stayed in Kaalfontein in Tembisa, was found dead with head injuries in 2012. 

On the registration of Homu as a spouse instead of a cousin, Ndlovu says she had been honest with the insurance company during her policy application and that the mistake had been on the part of the insurance company. 

She again mentioned Homu as a spouse during her claiming from the insurance company in 2012 following Homu’s murder and she says this because she was told it would not make any difference not to do so. 

“I explained to them the relationship I had with him, but they told me on their side it says spouse. So, they said the mistake could have been made at the time of taking a policy. Nothing else I was asked. I was told to complete the forms as they were,” says Ndlovu. 

The prosecution brought up earlier evidence by an insurance company official in which the official testified to the benefits of registering someone as a spouse, which includes not having to pay premiums for them. However, Ndlovu insist that was not her motive. 

The court has heard that Ndlovu benefitted just over R131 000 in insurance policy payouts following Homu’s murder. Asked about how much of that money was used to help with funeral expenses, Ndlovu says she handed R15 000 in cash to the family in Tzaneen after the funeral. 

Her version was denied by the family, which was supported by an earlier affidavit in which Ndlovu is quoted as saying the only conversation she had had with Homu’s mother was when she insisted Ndlovu hands over all policy payouts, while denying her to be part of the funeral arrangements and ritual, which was the reason why she had chosen not to help with funeral arrangements. She has told the court that the affidavit referred to was not written by her.  

The trial continues.

I admitted to travelling to Bushbuckridge, not to killing my sister: Nomia Ndlovu
17 September 2021, 11:45 AM

The multiple murder trial against former police officer Nomia Ndlovu is currently under way at the Palm Ridge Magistrate’s Court. This after the trial was abruptly adjourned on Thursday owing to the accused’s ill-health. 

In a morning characterised by the Judge constantly reminding the accused to answer questions to avoid being seen as evasive, the prosecution kicked off proceedings by focussing on Ndlovu’s admission on July 21, 2021, to conspiracy to murder her sister, Joyce Ndlovu and her five children.

While Ndlovu admitted to remembering that admission, she was quick to point out that it was not an admission to commit murder, but to travel to Bushbuckridge together with Njabulo Kunene and Mr. Dlamini.  

“I don’t remember conspiring with Mr Dlamini to kill anyone,” she says. 

She says her reason for travelling to Bushbuckridge with the two men was to introduce Kunene to a traditional healer.  

Ndlovu, who can be seen and heard in a video telling Mr Dlamini to burn Joyce and her five kids leaving behind no witnesses so that they could cash in on insurance policies, says everything she said in that video was something Kunene had told her to say so that Dlamini could provide transport to Bushbuckridge.   

“Before I got into the car, I had a short discussion with Vincent Kunene. Vincent told me what to say,” says Ndlovu. 

The former police officer has denied ever calling Joyce around the time of her travelling to Bushbuckridge to ask her to help her with the finding of a traditional healer.

Before a sudden turn of ill health on Thursday, there was a back-and-forth between the accused and the judge on whether she had in fact contributed to the burial of her other sister, Audrey, who was killed in 2013.

However, the judge was quick to remind the accused that the charge was not whether she had contributed, but that she had killed people in order to cash in on the insurance policies.   

The court also heard that the accused had made an offer of R15 000 towards Witness Homu’s 2012 burial, which the judge said he had found odd in that people do not make offers towards funeral but contributions.

The judge also said even if she paid any portion of the monies cashed in from insurance policies, it should not be regarded as a “contribution” since it was money intended for that purpose.   

“Contribution is anything from your own pocket (beyond insurance policy payout).”  

The accused insisted, all said and done, she had not killed anyone and was innocent, but the judge was quick to remind her that it was not up to her to determine, but only for her to give evidence.   

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