Pregnant 28-year-old Tshegofatso Pule was found stabbed and hanging in Gauteng.
Pregnant 28-year-old Tshegofatso Pule was found stabbed and hanging in Gauteng.

Tshegofatso Pule murder accused abandons legal aid bid, opts for private representation

By Chulumanco Mahamba Time of article published Jun 24, 2020

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Johannesburg - The case of Muzikayise Malephane, the 31-year-old man accused of murdering 8-month pregnant Tshegofatso Pule, was postponed to July 2 after he abandoned his bid for legal aid.

Malephane, from Zondi, Soweto, was arrested on his way from Mpumalanga last week and appeared briefly in the Roodepoort Magistrate's Court where he was charged with the murder of the heavily pregnant 28-year-old woman.

Pule's body was found hanging from a tree and had last been seen alive while getting into a metered taxi which her boyfriend had called for her two weeks earlier. 

The ANC Women’s League, the EFF and the Not In My Name movement were among those who picketed outside the Roodepoort Magistrates Court where Malephane was going to appear virtually from Krugersdorp Prison. 

The accused abandoned his bid for legal aid representation and the matter was postponed to July 2 to allow him to get a private lawyer. 

This postponement did not sit well with some of the supporters. 

“The justice system needs to change,” a woman shouted. 

One of Pule’s friends, who was in the gallery during the court proceedings, told eNCA she was upset when the matter was postponed because Malephane wanted private legal representation. 

“We are all here to find out what happened to Tshegofatso. Who was the mastermind behind this whole plan and we are very disappointed,” she said. 

The friend added more questions needed to be asked in the case. 

“If he was paid to murder Tshegofatso then it means that he can get paid to take the fall for whoever is behind this. The more time we give him, the more he becomes relaxed, the more the people who actually conspired behind this can get away with all of this,” she said. 

Another friend Palesa Ndarala, said she believed that the justice system did not support victims. 

“Tshego is dead, the baby is dead. They were not given a chance to come back and plead for their lives yet Muzi has been given countless chances to pay for a lawyer,” she said. 


The Star

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