The much-anticipated commencement of the murder trial of Senzo Meyiwa may still materialise on Tuesday morning. This is according to Advocate Gerrie Nel who says there may be further delays to the trial which was expected to start on Monday.
“I wish I could say the trial will start but experience has shown there is always more than one application. I do believe and I have heard in the passages that there will be applications but accused 1 to 4 today. So, that’s kind of how these big trials start,” says Nel.
The state was right in withholding some witness statement, but the defense was also right in asking for a postponement on Monday ahead of the start of the #SenzoMeyiwa murder trial at the North Gauteng High Court. That’s according to Advocate Gerrie Nel. #SABCNews pic.twitter.com/nYEIRLxMVS
— Sipho King K Kekana (@KingKAzania) April 12, 2022
On Monday, the trial failed to start when counsel for accused No.: 5 accused the state of ambushing their client by releasing some of the key witness statements in the eleventh hour.
“The conduct of the state of withholding the statements violated accused No.: 5’s constitutional rights. He has been denied the opportunity to prepare for this trial and for his defence. It is my request that we adjourn this matter until tomorrow,” said Sibiya’s legal team.
The state did not oppose the request to stand down matters for the day, stating that they had withheld some of those statements since they felt by releasing those statements would reveal the identity of the state witness and possibly put their lives in danger.
Contrary to Nel’s expectations for counsel for accused No.: 1 to 4 to make an application on Tuesday morning, the legal team was at pains to convince the court to start with the trial, stating they were ready.
According to Nel, the five have all indicated they will plead not guilty to the charges brought against them in relation to the murder of the former Orlando Pirates keeper.
Meyiwa was shot dead in October 2014 at his girlfriend, Kelly Khumalo’s home in Vosloorus. This happened in the presence of seven other people in the house including, Khumalo, her mother, her sister Zandi, Longwe Twala who was dating Zandi at the time, Meyiwa’s friends Mthokozisi Thwala and Tumelo Madlala, and Kelly Khumalo’s 4-year-old son Christian.
This after three men entered the house and demanded money and cellphones, according to witness statements of those who were in the house. A fight is said to have ensued and the former Orlando Pirates keeper was shot.
Two years ago, the NPA announced a breakthrough in the investigation when Sibiya, Bongani Sandiso Ntanzi, Mthobisi Prince Mncube, Mthokoziseni Ziphozonnke Maphisa, and Sifisokuhle Ntuli were charged with Meyiwa’s murder, attempted murder of other witnesses, armed robbery, possession of firearms without a licence, and possession of ammunition.