IFP murder accused ‘had alibi’

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Durban - One of the men accused of shooting dead an IFP supporter told the Durban Regional Court on Friday he was at work the day of the crime.

Father of two, Malusi Sibusiso Ncengwa, testified he told police he was working in Durban's Umbilo suburb when Inkatha Freedom Party supporter Cebisile Shezi was gunned down 30km away, near the Thembalihle railway station, in KwaMashu, on October 6.

He worked from 11am and arrived back at home in A-section, KwaMashu, after 7.30 pm.

“I did inform them (the police) that I was at work at the time.”

He said he took the police to the construction site in Umbilo where he worked as a security guard. He told the court he handed himself to police when he heard they were looking for him, and that they had initially informed him he was wanted for an armed robbery case.

After spending four nights in police custody and being made to participate in two identity parades was he formally charged with Shezi's murder.

“It pains me that I am still in custody. I thought I would be free by now.”

He said the police had questioned his employers, but thought that they did not believe them.

Ncengwa has been accused of Shezi's murder along with Mjabulelwa Gwala, Skhumbuzo Nxumalo, Bonginhlanhla Gwala and eThekwini ward 39 councillor Mgezeni “Bhungu” Gwala.

Earlier in the day Nxumalo declined to answer most questions put to him by prosecutor Blackie Swart, saying he would answer them when he stood trial.

Magistrate Siphiwe Hlophe earlier this week granted Bonginhlanhla Gwala bail after closed-circuit television footage indicated he was at home in Umhlanga at the time of Shezi's killing.

Gwala was released on bail of R20,000, on condition that he remain at his home between 6pm and 6am, and that he report to the Durban North police station three times a week. He is allowed to leave the eThekwini municipality only after informing the investigating officer.

Supporters of the National Freedom Party and the IFP were present at the court and police controlled access to the court.

Shezi was killed shortly after Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa addressed IFP supporters at a sports field in A-section, KwaMashu, on October 6. She had been wearing an IFP T-shirt.

Mthethwa was speaking to the IFP supporters in an attempt to reduce tension in the area after the abduction of IFP councillor Themba Xulu, who was later murdered.

Xulu was out on bail at the time for allegedly attempting to burn down Bhungu Gwala's house. He was later found murdered. - Sapa


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