The five men convicted of the murder of Dumisani Masilela will be sentenced today in the Gauteng High Court, Pretoria. Picture: Jacques Naude/African News Agency (ANA)
The five men convicted of the murder of Dumisani Masilela will be sentenced today in the Gauteng High Court, Pretoria. Picture: Jacques Naude/African News Agency (ANA)

Rhythm City actor Dumisani Masilela’s killer accuses judge of wrongly interpreting law

By Zelda Venter Time of article published Aug 4, 2021

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Pretoria - The man who pulled the trigger which killed Rhythm City actor Dumisani Masilela yesterday accused the judge of wrongly interpreting the law in convicting him.

It is the same judge who will today sentence him and his four a co-accused on an array of charges, including murder.

In a bizarre turn of events and moments before Gauteng High Court, Pretoria Judge Papi Mosopa postponed the trial yesterday for sentencing, Khumbuzo Solomon Mukhaba, through his lawyer, told the judge that he had “issues he wanted to raise with the court”.

Mukhaba refused to tell his lawyer what these issues were, but he eagerly approached the witness stand in heavy in leg irons – a security measure.

The man identified by his co-accused as the shooter, as well as Masilela’s friend Bongani Khumalo as the person who pulled the trigger, once again said that it was not him.

While Judge Mosopa tried to explain to him that he and his co-accused had already been convicted and the trial was nearly over, Mukhaba refused to listen.

He told the judge: “I would like to inform this court that my conscience has no place for remorse, as I did not commit the crime.

“I was found guilty of something I did not do. You misinterpreted the law,” he told the judge.

A patient Judge Mosopa tried to explain that if he was unhappy with his fate, he could appeal.

But an argumentative Mukhaba would not listen. He said he wanted a postponement for several days, so that he could “find the (legal) authority” to prove the judge was wrong.

Still mumbling “this is a miscarriage of justice”, Mukhaba had to make his way back to the dock as the judge would not entertain him.

The prosecution, meanwhile, asked the court to sentence Mukhaba, 26, and his co-accused – Sfundo Harrison Nkosi 30, of Ivory Park, Bongani John Masombuka, 34, of Tembisa, Brian Makhubedu, 24, and Mashudu Malema, 31, all of Ivory Park – to life imprisonment for the killing of Masilela.

The actor was gunned down during the attempted hijacking of his car in Tembisa on August 2, 2017.

He was hit in the side but managed to drive on for a while before he and Khumalo changed seats. His friend then drove him to the hospital, but he died the following day.

His shooting followed a lengthy crime spree by the gang, who earlier hijacked several cars.

Two of the occupants were dropped off in a veld in Tembisa, where they were left with their hands tied behind their backs.

Prosecutor Josie van der Westhuizen said if it was not for the community, it is not known what the pair’s fate would have been.

She said the court should not differentiate between the five when it comes to sentencing, as each one had a crucial role to play in the crimes.

Van der Westhuizen said the trigger-man only managed to kill Masilela with the help of his friends.

The five accused, who have 15 children between them, are bad examples of fatherhood, she said. Referring to Masilela’s death, Van der Westhuizen said: “It was such a sensless murder.”

Counsel for the accused were loudly mocked by family members of Masilela and some of the other victims in the public gallery when they once again called on the court to have mercy on the accused.

The judge commented that the community was clearly sick and tired of crime.

They will be sentenced today.

Pretoria News

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