Wife slain: SANDF member ‘a violent man’

Murder accused Lwanda Mxolisi Zungu during his first appearance at the Pinetown Magistrate Court. Picture: Tumi Pakkies/ Independent Newspapers.

Murder accused Lwanda Mxolisi Zungu during his first appearance at the Pinetown Magistrate Court. Picture: Tumi Pakkies/ Independent Newspapers.

Published Jan 9, 2024


Durban — An SANDF military practitioner who is accused of shooting and killing his wife has been described as a violent man who had been abusing his wife Tania Msane-Zungu, 36, who was buried on Sunday.

The soldier, Lwanda Mxolisi Zungu, appeared on Monday in the Pinetown Magistrate’s Court for the first time after he handed himself over to police. Zungu allegedly shot his wife on January 3, 2024, while his two children and their grandmother Gwen Msane were in the house. After that, he ran away.

Msane told the Daily News that on the day of the incident, she was visiting the couple as they were all together on New Year’s Eve.

“I usually get out of the bedroom to go and bathe after my son-in-law has a bath because I respect him, but on that day I didn’t hear his footsteps. I waited until 9.30 but still they had not left their room,” explained Msane.

She said she continued to wait and suddenly heard her daughter screaming for her and saying Zungu was beating her.

“As I rushed to their room I heard multiple gunshots. The kids had already opened the bedroom door of their parents. When I got there I just saw the blood oozing out of Tania’s body,” she said.

At that moment Zungu was still firing shots and they decided to run away.

“When we got by the gate the neighbours were already outside saying they heard gunshots,” said Msane.

Their neighbours hid them and the kids.

“I saw him with a gun getting in the car,” she said.

Gwen Msane, mother of the murdered Tanaa Msane-Zungu, expressed her shock and pain of losing her daughter in such a tragic manner. Picture: Tumi Pakkies/ Independent Newspapers.

Msane said on the day the ambulance took a long time to arrive. Describing their relationship, she said the couple fought a lot and Zungu was violent. She said Zungu was attending therapy at church. Msane said at one stage Zungu handed his firearm to the church as he said he was starting over and they renewed their vows in May last year, on Tania’s birthday.

Msane said she recently found out that Zungu went back to the church to get his firearm telling them he was going to sell it. She said when Zungu disappeared after the incident he was in touch with his children. Whenever they asked him where he was he would tell them that his whereabouts were not important but he is trying to make sure that they do not go to foster care.

She said she worried about her safety and that of the children should Zungu get bail. However, she said Zungu always made sure that his children had everything they needed and went to good schools.

“I always told him how happy I am about how he takes care of his children,” said Msane.

Zungu’s sister, Lwandle Zungu, said it has not been easy for the family, especially since the kids are now left without parents. She described her brother as a protector.

“We don’t know Lwanda as a violent person,” said Lwandle.

Zungu’s matter was postponed to January 17 for bail and for the investigating officer to profile him and verify his address.

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