Picture: Pixabay

JOHANNESBURG - The Gauteng Department of Community Safety on Tuesday welcomed the hefty sentence delivered in a Vaal femicide case at the High Court, sitting at Palm Ridge Magistrate's Court.

In May 2018, Lebogang Mofokeng murdered his 21-year-old ex-girlfriend, Jabulile Nhlapo, at her Vanderbijlpark student residence. 

Mofokeng was sentenced to life imprisonment for murder, five years' imprisonment for the theft of his father’s firearm, four years for unlawful possession of a firearm and ammunition, and a further 18 months for being unfit to possess the firearm.  

Nhlapo was found lying dead in a pool of blood in her room after Mofokeng allegedly gained access to the commune and shot her once in the head.

The 21-year-old was a human resources intern at Emfuleni municipality. She had just enrolled for a bachelor of education degree at the University of South Africa. 

Handing down judgment, Judge Herman Broodryk said: "Violence against women is endemic in this country. It is the duty of the courts to impose harsher sentences considering the interests of society and the nature and seriousness of the offence".

The department said it applauded the criminal justice system for imposing a harsh sentence. "No one has a right to abuse and kill women even with the slightest provocation."

Initially, Mofokeng's defence argued that he did not intentionally kill Nhlapo. Mofokeng claimed that the murder was committed following a brawl between the former couple. He also claimed he only wanted to "scare off" Nhlapo's new boyfriend. 

African News Agency (ANA)