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The family of slain honeymoon bride Anni Dewani on Thursday night laid down the gauntlet to her murder accused husband: “Stop hiding and come to South Africa to face justice”.
Anni’s family spoke to the Daily Voice the day after self-confessed hitman Mziwamadoda Lennox Qwabe was locked up for 25 years behind bars after he admitted to killing the beautiful bride.
Qwabe’s evidence also placed Anni’s husband Shrien at the centre of the evil plot to kill his wife.
Anni’s uncle Ashok Hindocha welcomed the verdict from his home in Sweden.
But he urged Dewani to stop fighting his extradition and finally stand trial for the murder.
“It is vital that the rest of the accused [Dewani and Xolile Mngeni] stand trial if you read the court record on this guy, there isn’t much detail,”Ashok tells the Daily Voice.
“We need the whole picture and after this everything is pointing to [Dewani] and it leaves us with mixed feelings.
“It has caused us more psychological stress than when he was first named as a suspect and it has created more questions.
“Shrien needs to come forward and tell us what happened… this issue also affected him because he became sick after his wife was murdered.
“He could get better after he goes to court and tells people what happened to his wife.
“And as a family we want to know the truth, we know Anni is not coming back and we need the case to wrap up so we can get closure,” he says.
Qwabe is now two days into his marathon 25-year sentence.
He was sentenced at the Western Cape High Court to five years in prison for kidnapping, 15 years for robbery with aggravating circumstances as well as five years for the illegal possession of a firearm.
The sentences run concurrently.
In his plea deal, Qwabe described the terrifying ordeal Anni suffered .
He fingers his co-accused Xolile Wellington Mngeni, 24, as the triggerman.
Qwabe claims he was contacted by a man named Monde Mbolombo on November 12, 2010, and told there was a “job” that needed to be done.
Qwabe said taxi driver Zola Tongo contacted him and they arranged to meet the next day.
After speaking to Tongo, Qwabe contacted another friend and told him “someone had to be killed”.
This friend was Mngeni.
Qwabe said Tongo picked him up near Khaya bazaar on November 13, 2010, and they drove to Sidima Circle where they met Mngeni.
“While en route to meet with [Mngeni], Zola told me that he will bring a couple into the township and that the husband wanted the wife killed,” he testified.
“Zola said that it had to look like a hijacking and robbery.
“The agreement was that Zola and the husband [now known to me as Shrien Dewani] would remain unharmed and that the deceased would be kidnapped, robbed and killed.”
The hijacking was to happen at the intersection of NY 112 and NY 108 and it was meant to look like a random criminal act.
They agreed to “take part in the conspiracy” for a fee of R15 000.
The plan was behind schedule but Qwabe said Dewani insisted they proceed.
“Later Zola gave me another call and said that the husband wants the job done the same Saturday,” Qwabe said.
At about 11pm, Tongo sent him a text and he said they got into position.
“When [Tongo’s] vehicle got to the predetermined place, [Mngeni] and I were in position,” Qwabe added.
“I saw the car coming into NY 112 from NY 108 and told [Mngeni] the car is here.
“We approached the vehicle and [Mngeni] who was in possession of a firearm, pointed it at [Tongo] and ordered him out of the vehicle.”
The case continues.
*This article was published in the Daily Voice