Bonakele Pakisi's testimony at the North West High Court in Mmabatho ensured that Pieter Doorewaard and Phillip Schutte were jailed for killing Matlhomola Mosweu. Picture: Molaole Montsho

Coligny - "I am not done with you. I am going to eat you piece by piece."

These are some of the words used to intimidate the witness in the infamous Coligny sunflower murder in North West. 

Bonakele Pakisi, the sole witness of the murder of teenager Matlhomola Mosweu, said he had been insulted, intimidated and called the K-word following his testimony at the North West High Court in Mmabatho that ensured that Pieter Doorewaard and Phillip Schutte were jailed for killing Mosweu.

"My life is in danger. To be honest  I do not know what is going to happen.  I do not know whether I will get shot at close range or a sniper will take me off. 

"I am going to be killed; it is just a matter of when. There are people who kicked my door at the night. I am not safe at all," he said at his home in Tlhabologang, Coligny. 

"There are some shops in Coligny that I cannot go in, there are certain area of the town that I do not go to. They gave me an ugly look. I am being called 'n hond (a dog)." 

Pakisi survived two attacks at his home barely two weeks after he left the witness protection programme in August last year. He said a relative of one of the convicted killers blocked his way in town, followed him and threatened to eat him piece by piece. 

"This man drove slowly next to me and told me I am a k****r, he is not done with me, he is going to eat me piece by piece.  I have told him that he want to shoot me he should do so."

Pakisi said the same relative assaulted him in June and he opened a case of assault and crimen injuria. However, on Monday he was told at the Coligny Magistrate's Court  that the case was withdrawn for lack of evidence. 

North West police said the case was still under investigation. 

Pakisi said the constant intimidation and racial slurs made life difficult for him.

"All I want is for justice to be served,"  he said.

He said he was intending to take his cases to the Human Rights Commission. 

While Pakisi was filing questions with journalists, community members passing-by called his name. He seemed to be well known in the area. One man said if something happens to Pakisi they were aware who could be the perpetrators.

"Let them touch him, they will see an ugly scene worse that when they killed Matlhomola (Mosweu). We know who is behind to whole thing, they want him to change his statement so that the killer can be released," the man said.

He did not want to reveal his identity for security reasons.

North West High Court Judge Ronnie Hendricks sentenced  Doorewaard, 28, and Schutte, 35, to 18 and 23 years respectively for killing Mosweu, 16.

The court found that the pair killed Mosweu on 20 April 2017 by pushing him out of a moving van after they found him stealing sunflower heads worth R80 at their employer's field at Rietvlei farm near Scotland informal settlement in Coligny.

Mosweu's death set off violent protest, several houses were torched and shops looted. It further divided the community into racial groupings.

The court relied on Pakisi's testimony as the sole eyewitness of the incident. Doorewaard and Schutte were granted leave to appeal their conviction at the Supreme Court of Appeals.

African News Agency (ANA)