Family of murdered Mpumalanga kids decries delaying tactics by accused

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The family of two murdered kids, Gabisile Shabane, with albinism and her cousin, Nkosikhona Ngwenya, at Hlalanikahle in Emalahleni, Mpumalanga, says it’s concerned about what seems to be delaying tactics by Thokozani Msibi, one of the accused.

This follows another postponement of the case to Friday by the Mpumalanga High Court Division, sitting in Middelburg.

Msibi, Knowledge Mhlanga and Brilliant Mkhize are accused of killing the two children in January 2018. They face charges of housebreaking, murder, kidnapping and violation of a corpse, among others.

On Monday, the case was postponed after the new legal representative of the three accused requested time to consult.

Again on Wednesday, the lawyer asked for more time to consult. When the court resumed in the afternoon, Msibi had fired his lawyer. He told the court that he was not in agreement with the legal representative on some aspects of the case.

The lawyer of the other two accused and the state were ready to proceed. The court then postponed the matter to Friday for Msibi to get another lawyer.

But, the family of the murdered children says the postponements adds to their emotional strain.

“We are very sad. We are down as you can see, because this to us. It’s torture. It’s an emotional abuse. Msibi is abusing us emotionally now. We are so hurt; (we) won’t lie to you,” says Family Spokesperson, Nomthandazo Ngwenya.

It is for the second time that Msibi fires his legal representative since the case began in 2018.

National  Prosecuting Authority Spokesperson, Monica Nyuswa, says the delaying tactics won’t be tolerated.

“Accused No.: 1, Mr Msibi has terminated the services of his legal attorney. The matter has been postponed to allow him to get another legal attorney. As the NPA, we view this as one of the delaying tactics. As the state, we are not going to allow further delays.”

The two children were allegedly abducted. Shabane’s mutilated body was found buried in a shallow grave in Cullinan, east of Pretoria. Ngwenya’s body was found on the side of the N4 toll road.

A fourth accused Themba Thubane pleaded guilty to the charges in 2019. He’s serving two life sentences.

Court hands down sentence:

A fifth accused, who was arrested with body parts in Eswatini, died before he could be extradited to the country to face the law.

People with albinism still face discrimination: