Watch the Sitholes every Thursday at 17h30 on e.tv
Durban - The Reddy family have never quite recovered from the trauma of losing oThongathi bus owner and businessman Balaram Reddy and his wife, Maliga, who were brutally murdered in their Burbreeze home just over two years ago.
Some members of the family have been regularly attending the Durban High Court trial of the four men accused of the double murder and of the attempted murder of Nivashen Reddy, the couple’s son, since it began last week.
However, it has been with a heavy heart as Nivashen’s sister Prishini Rammanan died tragically in January.
She was in the house, with her husband, Rishal, at the time of the robbery and attack in December 2011.
The couple, who were tormented by the killers, had come to visit her parents before the birth of their first child. The family were asleep when attacked at 3am.
A close relative, who did not want to be named, told the Daily News on Thursday that Prishini had gone missing on the anniversary of her parents’ death in 2013. Her body was found on railway tracks in January. They are still awaiting the post-mortem report.
“We just want to see justice done,” said the relative.
Sibusiso Mthimkhulu, 28, of Frasers, just outside oThongathi; Senzo Sello Ndlui, 20, of Burbreeze, Tongaat; Lucky Ernest Njoko, 31, of Burbreeze; and Vusi Ngxumeshe, 37, of Frasers, have all pleaded not guilty to the charges of murder, attempted murder, housebreaking with intent to rob and robbery with aggravating circumstances.
Balaram Reddy, 59, died of a blunt-force head injury and gunshot wound to the abdomen, and his wife, Maliga, 53, died of a gunshot wound to the head.
Soon after the attack, Nivashen, 32, told the media he was shot as soon as he got off his bed. He was also assaulted and stabbed while he lay on the floor.
He escaped through the front door. At that point he did not know his parents were killed.
The robbers stole R4 000 in cash, as well as cellphones, a laptop, a gold bangle, a pair of Nike takkies and a gold wedding band.
Yesterday Constable Calvin Ngubane, of the Umhlali K9 Unit, testified to arresting Mthimkhulu on December 27, 2011, but he could not point out Mthimkhulu in court as he said he could not identify him after all this time.
He testified to driving to Frasers informal settlement in a marked police vehicle.
“I knocked on the door. We identified ourselves and I asked for S’bu,” he testified. When “S’bu” identified himself, Ngubane produced his pocket book, read him his rights and took him to the Tongaat SAPS where Mthimkhulu signed a certificate of his rights.
Under cross-examination, Ngubane denied putting a plastic bag over Mthimkhulu’s head and assaulting Mthimkhulu with other police officers.
The trial continues.