Cop’s affidavit details wife’s last moments as husband shot her

Military man Lwanda Mxolisi Zungu appeared at the Pinetown Magistrate’s Court on Thursday. He is accused of shooting and killing his wife, Tania Msane Zungu. Picture: Anelisa Kubheka

Military man Lwanda Mxolisi Zungu appeared at the Pinetown Magistrate’s Court on Thursday. He is accused of shooting and killing his wife, Tania Msane Zungu. Picture: Anelisa Kubheka

Published Apr 26, 2024


Durban — The bail application for the murder accused husband who is a reservist with the SANDF continues on Monday.

The military man is charged with the murder of his wife, who was shot once in the head, four times in the neck, and once in the body.

This was detailed in the bail affidavit of the investigating officer, Sergeant Sugar Gabriel Sosibo, which was read out in the Pinetown Magistrate’s Court during the bail application of 37-year-old Lwanda Mxolisi Zungu.

Zungu is accused of shooting and killing his wife, Tania Msane Zungu, in their Pinetown home while his two children, aged 15 and 11, and their grandmother Gwen Msane were in the house.

“The mother-in-law noticed that the accused was not doing the same routine as every morning before leaving for work. It was the same morning that they heard the deceased scream ‘Mom Mom Lwanda is hitting me’.

“When they got to the bedroom, when they walked in he was standing on the bed and began firing several shots at her while she was lying on the bed. They fled and went to a neighbour, when they went outside again another neighbour told them the accused had walked down the road with blood on his clothes,” said Sosibo in his affidavit.

Sosibo said after the shooting on January 3, when the accused had fled the scene, Zungu was telephoned by Brigadier Cele telling him to hand himself over to the police.

Sosibo said that Zungu handed himself over to Pinetown police on January 5. His whereabouts were not known until he arrived at the police station.

“I am opposed to bail, this accused is charged with a serious offence committed against a defenceless woman in front of his kids. He had the clear intention of killing the deceased.

“This is evident in the number of rounds he fired at her. He shot four times in the neck, once in the body and once in the head. He could have refrained from this violent act. He is an SANDF member who has been trained in military warfare and swore to protect citizens but shot his wife in cold blood. He can therefore commit further serious offences if released.”

Soldier Lwanda Mxolisi Zungu with his wife Tania Msane-Zungu, whom he is accused of killing. | Supplied

Sosibo said the accused threatened a State witness at the murder scene on the day of the shooting.

“The accused pointed a gun at him (the witness) telling him he would shoot him; this was while he threw stones at him. The accused has no fixed assets or anything tying him down to this area. Even though the SANDF employs him there is no guarantee he will have a job if he gets bail.

“They get deployed to other countries and he knows how to leave the country, he is a flight risk. The accused knows the State witnesses in the matter which are his mother-in-law and two children. He shot his own wife; nothing stops him from shooting the witness.”

He said the accused had already undermined justice by committing this “atrocious” act while employed by the SANDF.

“These crimes of murder, especially against women, are identified as threats to stability in the country.

“The community is already up in arms with many similar cases where people want justice. This crime was committed against a helpless and defenceless woman. It could lead to possible vigilantism if the accused is granted bail – the community is angry.

“This accused blatantly disregarded the law and the right to life, this is the very same law he swore to uphold as a member of the SANDF.

“If he had any remorse he would not have left the crime scene like he did. He intentionally traumatised members of his family. This court needs to show that not even members of the armed forces are above the law.”

State prosecutor Ehud-Jadon Francke had a letter from the SANDF that was attached to Sosibo’s affidavit and confirmed that Zungu was a reservist and not permanently employed.

“They (reservists) are activated for specific tasks when needed. We confirm there’s no need to have him (Zungu) called up for duty,” read the letter.

Francke also read into the record messages between Msane-Zungu and Londi Ndimande, a pastor’s wife.

On February 14, Msane-Zungu sent Ndimande these messages: “Last time he hit me my dad told me to leave because clearly he will kill me one day. I called dad a few days later and told him I forgave him because he was my husband. Dad said he respects that but said should I die at my husband’s hands he won’t bother to come.

“I think I have this thing called battered woman syndrome, it may not be a classic case but I think I have it. Jah, so many women stay because they don’t know what they are going to do with the kids.”

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