Former Stellenbosch deputy mayor Cameron Mcako was shot dead in his tavern. Picture Cindy Waxa/African news Agency (ANA) Archives
Former Stellenbosch deputy mayor Cameron Mcako was shot dead in his tavern. Picture Cindy Waxa/African news Agency (ANA) Archives

Two more charged with murder of former Stellenbosch deputy mayor Cameron Mcako

By Mwangi Githahu Time of article published Sep 14, 2021

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Cape Town - Two more people have been charged with murder and conspiracy to commit murder in the case where Stellenbosch deputy mayor Nyaniso Jindela, his wife Unathi Jindela and two others are charged with the death of former Stellenbosch deputy mayor Cameron Mcako.

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) added the names of Bonisanani Fihla and Phakamisa Nkopo to the charge sheet during a pretrial conference on Friday. All six are set for another pretrial conference on October 22, at which legal representation will be sorted out.

The two other accused in the case are alleged gunman Phumlani Sibongo and a friend of the Jindelas, Gladstone Relegu.

Sibongo, Fihla and Nkopo are charged with attempted murder, unlawful possession of a firearm and ammunition.

At the time of his death, Mcako was a businessman and community leader. He owned and worked at the Happy Rest Tavern in Kayamandi, Stellenbosch, where he was killed. He had been friends with the couple until they fell out shortly before he was killed.

In their summary of the facts, the NPA said that prior to the shooting, Nyaniso Jindela thought Mcako wanted to kill him and decided to take preventative action by conspiring with others to kill Mcako.

STELLENBOSCH deputy mayor Nyaniso Jindela. | Picture: [email protected]

Court papers said Nyaniso Jindela brought in his friend Relegu, who recruited Fihla and Fihla then got assistance from Sibongo and Nkopo. Sibongo, Fihla and Nkopo agreed to kill Mcako for a fee and the Jindelas approached members of their family to get the money together.

On October 31, Unathi Jindela received R20 000 in her bank account and immediately paid R2 000 into Fihla’s account, enabling Fihla to hire the car used in the shooting.

Meanwhile, the court papers said that to hide their involvement, the Jindelas and Relegu made sure they were far from Kayamandi and travelled to the Eastern Cape on November 1 when the murder happened.

The three alleged gunmen then went to Mcako’s tavern where they posed as customers before Sibongo walked up to Mcako, who was serving customers, shot him in the head and tried to flee. However, there was a struggle during which the three alleged gunmen fired shots in the tavern before fleeing. Mcako was taken to hospital, where he died on November 3.

The morning after the shooting, a relative of the Jindelas paid R30 000 into Unathi Jindela’s bank account and she then withdrew R36 900 before she and her husband moved that money and other funds to Fihla’s account.

Fihla paid R12 500 and R10 000 to Sibongo and Nkopo, respectively. After the payments, Relegu returned to his home in Stellenbosch and the Jindelas followed on November 3.

On November 11, Fihla was arrested in possession of one of the guns fired as he fled the shooting scene, and 18 spent cartridges.

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