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Suitcase murder accused will deny any knowledge of mom and child’s death

Sbongakonke Mthembu

Sbongakonke Mthembu

Published Apr 19, 2023


Durban — Mother and daughter Slindile Pamela Zamisa and Andile Zamisa say that they know nothing about the deaths of Smangele Simamane and her 12-year-old daughter Sbongakonke Mthembu.

This was what their Legal Aid defence Zeera Fareed put to Smangele’s husband, Senzo Simamane, during cross-examination on Tuesday in the Durban High Court.

The Zamisas are on trial for the 2020 kidnapping and murders of Simamane’s wife and stepdaughter.

The two had initially appeared along with a teen. However, they now stood trial on their own after the teenager’s defence indicated that she would now be pleading guilty, and a separation of trial was affected on Tuesday.

It is alleged that Smangele and her daughter were assaulted, had boiling water poured on them and their bodies bungled into a large suitcase and dumped on Lwandle Drive near the Umgeni River in KwaDabeka.

Simamane on Tuesday led evidence as the trial began, and towards the end of the day, he was being cross-examined on the witness stand.

He had earlier testified that in the early hours of the morning of October 6, 2020, before going to report his wife and child missing to police, he had been told by a resident that Sbonga had been seen at the Zamisa home.

And there he had seen the two accused, Nomfundo and a teen, inside the property where there had been a fire, and they were burning things.

Nomfundo Truelove Ngcobo is Slindile’s stepdaughter who has been sentenced for her part in the killings and is already serving her sentence.

Fareed, during cross-examination, said that her instruction from accused one (Slindile) was that there had been an agreement between the parents that Sbonga and the teen were no longer to be friends as there were always problems when they were together.

She said on 5 October, Sbonga had come to the Zamisa home and asked the teen to accompany her to the shop.

“Accused 2 (Andile) even reprimanded the teen that she was not supposed to see Sbonga. At that stage, Andile, Nomfundo and the teen were home when Sbonga came to the house.”

Fareed added that when Slindile returned to find Sbonga at their home, Smangele was summoned from her home and, on arrival, was confronted by Slindile as to why Sbonga had come to their house.

“Your wife then shouted at Sbonga and told her (Slindile) that she would deal with her (Sbonga). Further, accused one and two will say that was the last time they saw your wife and child. After that, they know nothing about what transpired.”

The two accused pleaded not guilty to kidnapping, murder, and obstruction or defeating the ends or the proper functioning justice.

Simamane’s cross-examination continues.

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