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Jailed for life: Pretoria man raped and murdered his daughter in the room where he had brutally killed her mom a day earlier

An inmate walking into a prison cell

The High Court in Pretoria has sentenced 33-year-old Kenneth Sego Debeila to two life terms behind bars for the brutal murder of his long-term girlfriend, and the rape and murder of their daughter aged 11. File Picture: Nokuthula Mbatha/African News Agency (ANA)

Published Oct 24, 2023


The North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria sentenced 33-year-old Kenneth Sego Debeila, from Nellmapius in Tshwane, to two life terms for the rape and murder of his 11-year-old daughter, Angela Tshepang Makhura.

Debeila was also sentenced to 15 years direct imprisonment for the murder of his long-term girlfriend, Itumeleng Bervely Makhura. The two had dated for 18 years.

Gauteng regional spokesperson for the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) Lumka Mahanjana said the court ordered that the sentences run concurrently, and Debeila be declared unfit to possess a firearm.

“Additionally, the court ordered that his name be added to the national register for sexual offenders and that the families of the victims be informed, and can make representations should Debeila be considered for parole,” said Mahanjana.

The High Court in Pretoria has sentenced 33-year-old Kenneth Sego Debeila to two life terms behind bars for the brutal murder of his long-term girlfriend, and the rape and murder of their daughter, aged 11. File Picture: Bongani Shilubane/African News Agency (ANA)

The court heard that on March 18, 2022, Debeila and his lover Itumeleng met at a club, and afterwards the two went to his place.

“When they arrived, a verbal and physical altercation ensued between the two of them when Debeila strangled and killed her. On March 19, 2022, the two children he shared with Itumeleng, Tshepang and a five-year-old boy visited him for a sleepover at his place,” said Mahanjana.

“That night the son shared a room with a family relative and Tshepang shared a bed with him (Debeila). While sleeping Debeila raped and strangled his daughter to death.”

The following day, Itumeleng’s mother met Debeila while he was out and about, and he was carrying bags.

“When she asked about Itumeleng, he told her that she was sleeping at his house,” said Mahanjana.

“When she arrived at the house, looking through the window she saw the 11-year-old girl’s body, on top of the bed with foam coming out of her mouth. When she went in, she called the police, and the body of the 11-year-old was taken.”

The community then started searching for Itumeleng.

After a while, the community members returned to Debeila’s house to search for Itumeleng again, and they found her body under the bed.

“Debeila was arrested two months later on May 13, 2022, in Limpopo after handing himself over to the police,” according to the NPA.

In court, Debeila pleaded guilty to the charges, through his attorney.

He told the court that he was remorseful, as he had handed himself over to the police and he did not waste the court’s time by pleading guilty to the heinous crimes.

In the end, the court found no compelling and substantial circumstances to deviate from the prescribed minimum sentence, and sentenced Debeila to the two life terms for the brutal murders and rape.

Earlier this year, the Alexandra Magistrate’s Court in Gauteng sentenced a 40-year-old Zimbabwean rapist to life imprisonment after he pleaded guilty to raping his 17-year-old biological daughter.

The father, whose name is withheld to protect the victim, raped the teenage girl for the first time in May 2022, and the ordeal continued until January this year.