Meyiwa trial postponed yet again over new evidence

The five men accused of killing Senzo Meyiwa at the Gauteng High Court in Pretoria. Picture: Oupa Mokoena Independent Newspapers

The five men accused of killing Senzo Meyiwa at the Gauteng High Court in Pretoria. Picture: Oupa Mokoena Independent Newspapers

Published May 13, 2024


In a bid to avert being accused of a “trial by ambush” the proceedings in the Senzo Meyiwa murder trial have been postponed by the Gauteng High Court, Pretoria, to Wednesday.

As the trial resumed on Monday following a two-week postponement due to evidence related to the cellphone communication between all the accused dating back to 2018, the defence counsel accused the State of engaging in a trial by ambush.

This came after State advocate Ronnie Sibanda introduced new evidence of 150 pages of banking transactions of the accused men, as court proceedings got under way.

Defence counsel, advocate Charles Mnisi, objected to this, indicating that the move by the State to introduce new evidence without supplying the documentation to the defence timeously jeopardised their defence.

While the defence counsel of the five accused men did not indicate a dispute over the transactions listed, they were, however, displeased about only being afforded the documents at the last minute.

Judge Ratha Mokgoatlheng noted the defence counsels’ collective assertion that the failure to afford them an opportunity to carefully peruse the documents and consult with their clients amounted to an ambush by the State.

This was, however, not the first time the defence counsel have decried the introduction of documents and additional evidence by the State during the course of the proceedings.

The matter also had to be postponed in April, for the State to supply the defence with documents, including affidavits and bank statements. However, when it resumed two days later, the trial could still not proceed with the evidence of cellphone expert Gideon Gouws, as a result of incomplete documents.

Advocate Zandile Mshololo, the defence counsel for the fifth accused, Sifisokuhle Nkani Ntuli, told the court she had received incomplete documents from the State on Tuesday and more information on Wednesday night.

As a result, Mshololo said, she had only been able to consult with her client on Tuesday but was not able to consult on the additional information received overnight.

The matter was stood down for Wednesday (May 15) to continue with the evidence of Gouws.

Muzikawukhulelwa Sthemba Sibiya, 34, Bongani Sandiso Ntanzi, 30, Mthobisi Prince Ncube, 36, Mthokoziseni Ziphozonke Maphisa, 35, and Sifisokuhle Ntuli, 32, are on trial for the October 2014 murder of Bafana Bafana and Orlando Pirates soccer player Senzo Meyiwa at the home of his then girlfriend Kelly Khumalo.

All five men have pleaded not guilty to the charges.

The Star