Johannesburg - The Hawks are now investigating Senzo Meyiwa’s killing, after the SA Police Service failed to make a breakthrough in the case - 18 months after his murder.
On Sunday, the Hawks and their team of experts who specialise in solving mysterious crimes descended on the house in Vosloorus, Ekurhuleni, where the football star was killed to reconstruct the scene of the crime on the night of October 26, 2014 when the Orlando Pirates and Bafana Bafana captain and goalkeeper was shot dead.
They were joined by Meyiwa’s lover and mother of his child, pop star Kelly Khumalo, her sister Zandi and a few other people who were in the house the night he was killed.
Neighbours who didn't know what was going on looked on curiously as the officers arrived at the house in a convoy of vehicles, marked and unmarked, and cordoned off the streets with a police tape so that no one could get close to the crime scene.
“What is going on? Why are the police back? Have they found something?” an elderly woman asked as she watched police officers pacing up and down outside the house.
Hawks spokesman Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi said they were not taking over the investigation from the SAPS but were getting involved because the case needed to be solved.
To do so, he said, law enforcement agencies with the expertise had to be brought in.
He said although police were in possession of many pictures of the crime scene, the Hawks also had to reconstruct the scene to get their own perspective with regard to what happened that day.
Mulaudzi said they were working together with the SAPS, and the reason they didn't get involved in the beginning was because the SAPS was following some leads at the time.
However, when those leads failed to provide a breakthrough, they decided it was time they stepped in and offered their assistance.
“We thought that now is the best time to get involved and come with a new perspective.
“We are here to find out what transpired that day and see if there was anything that anyone could have missed.
“We brought in our own experts who specialise in solving mysterious crimes.
“We are basically looking for new leads. The role of the SAPS still remains; we are just coming with a new method to solve this.
“We came to assist because we feel we can come with a better perspective to this case. We are a specialised unit of the SAPS,” Mulaudzi said.
A few hours after they were interviewed and also helped the police reconstruct the scene, Khumalo left in a Hummer with her sister. The police escorted them out of the neighbourhood.
Meyiwa was shot on the night of October 26 at Khumalo’s mother’s house.
In the house at the time was Khumalo, her mother Ntombi, younger sister Zandi and her boyfriend Longwe Twala, who is musician Chicco’s son. Two of Senzo’s friends were also there, as well as Khumalo’s son.
After Meyiwa’s shooting, the six adults who were in the house provided statements to the police. A police artist did a sketch of the suspect, based on the information provided by them.
Police also established a special multidisciplinary team of officers to investigate the murder and offered a R100 000 reward that was later increased to R250 000.
Police later arrested Zamokuhle Mbatha and charged him with the murder of Meyiwa. But the courts declined to prosecute him due to lack of evidence.
The National Prosecuting Authority spokesman at the time, Nathi Mncube, said there were inconsistencies from what was in the docket, what happened at the identity parade and the forensic evidence gathered from the crime scene.
Mbatha later instituted a multimillion-rand unlawful arrest lawsuit against Police Minister Nathi Nhleko.