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Paarl man accused of premeditated murder after he shot five people

Five people were killed in Mbekweni. File Picture: Ayanda Ndamane/African News Agency

Five people were killed in Mbekweni. File Picture: Ayanda Ndamane/African News Agency

Published Aug 17, 2023


Cape Town - The man who allegedly killed five people in Mbekweni made his second appearance in court on Wednesday.

Makhaya Cekiso was arrested last Monday for the murder of Olwethu Sompani, 34, his girlfriend Zimkhitha Solani, 39, and her two children – 14-year-old Ntlantla Solani and 12-year-old Simphiwe Solani – as well as friend Chandre Horn, 32.

He appeared in the Paarl Magistrate’s Court yesterday morning.

According to the charge sheet, Cekiso is accused of premeditated murder.

On Monday, August 7, Sompani was with his girlfriend, her children and their friend when the shooter fired several shots at the people in the shack. Horn managed to crawl to the gate but died.

Sompani’s aunt Vuyokazi Mfiki said she had heard that someone was taken in for questioning.

“I’m not sure how he was linked to the murder, but he was taken in by the police and we didn’t hear anything about him that day because we were still traumatised and shocked about the incident.

“The murder happened during load shedding, and I think that Chandre was waiting for the lights to go on before she went home.

“All the victims lived close to Olwethu’s home. We don’t know what the motive for the attack was.”

Mfiki said the murders shocked everyone in the neighbourhood.

Police spokesperson André Traut said: “At around 11.15pm on Wednesday, police members responded to a complaint of several gunshots fired at a residence in Chris Hani Street.

“They discovered the bodies of three male victims aged 12, 14 and 34, and two female victims aged 32 and 39.”

National Prosecuting Authority regional spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila said the case was postponed.

“Murder accused Makhaya Cekiso appeared in Paarl Magistrate’s Court today. He is charged with five counts of premeditated murder of five people, including two women and two children. His case has been postponed until August 23 for bail application.”