Bonakele Pakisi, the key witness in the Coligny sunflower murder trial says his life is in danger. Picture: Molaole Montsho.

Rustenburg - North West police are investigating a case in which the sole witness in a murder case against two Coligny farm workers was allegedly assaulted.

"The case is still under investigation," North West police spokesman Brigadier Sabata Mokgwabone said on Tuesday.

Bonakele Pakisi was the star witness in the trial involving Pieter Doorewaard and Phillip Schutte. His testimony helped the North West High Court to convict the pair for the murder of Matlhomola Jonas Mosweu.

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

The pair killed Mosweu on April 20, 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 protests which saw several houses torched and shops looted. It further divided the community into racial grouping.

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.

A Sunday Afrikaans newspaper Rapport reported that there was a recording in which Pakisi confessed to have lied in court.

On Monday, Pakisi told African News Agency (ANA) that he no longer feels free to walk in the sleepy maize producing town of Coligny.

He said he was assaulted and called the K-word by his attacker in June, he opened a case against him, but when he went to court on Monday, he was told the case was thrown out due to lack of evidence.

He went to the Coligny police station to ask why his assault case was withdrawn and the local police threatened to arrest him.

Pakisi was kept in witness protection for the duration of the trial. He was allegedly attacked twice at his home in Tlhabologang, after he was released from the witness protection programme.

He was due to brief the media on Wednesday, about his ordeal since he testified in the famous Coligny sunflower murder case.

African News Agency (ANA)