WATCH: Monoko Thoka convicted of murdering ANC MPL Mapiti Matsena
Pretoria - The man accused of killing ANC MPL Mapiti Matsena was convicted of murder and housebreaking with the intent to commit murder.
This followed the guilty plea by Monoko Thoka, 30, in the Gauteng High Court, Pretoria.
Thoka told Judge Hennie de Vos that he knew the consequences of his guilty plea and that, if no mitigating factors could be found, he could face life behind bars.
It had emerged from a post mortem report that Thoka had stabbed Matsena at least 11 times at the MPL’s Doornpoort, north of Pretoria home on July 15 last year.
According to his plea explanation Thoka was upset because Matsena refused to hand back some of his belongings which were still in his room on the premises, after he (Thoka) had quit his job.
Matsena died on the scene due to multiple stab wounds and a subsequent loss of blood.
Thoka’s lawyer, Martin Botha, read out his client’s plea explanation while a packed courtroom anxiously sat waiting to hear the motive for the killing.Thoka in his opening to the statement said he and the deceased were from the same village, called Ga-Marikana.
Matsena had employed him to take care of the his disabled son - he had to, among others, bath him and take him to school. He also did gardening for Matsena.
In December last year Thoka and Matsena’s sister had a disagreement and he quit his job. He said it was because of the treatment he had received by the family and because he did not regularly receive his salary.
He went back to the house in January to fetch his belongings, which included a phone tablet and clothes, but Matsena refused to hand it back. He said Matsena assaulted him before chasing him away.
Thoka laid a charge of assault with the police and meanwhile repeatedly tried to get his belongings back. According to Thoka Matsena had boasted that nothing would happen to him regarding the charge as he had money and political influence.
When Thoka heard the charges were dropped, coupled with the fact that he could not get his possessions back, he said he snapped.
“I decided to take revenge by confronting the deceased and to show him he could not treat people like that. My intention was to stab the deceased. I went to his house and waited for him to return”.
Thoka said he gained entry through an unlocked door and went to the bedroom, where he found the wife of the deceased.
“I told her to be quiet and I covered her with a blanket. When the deceased walked in, he saw me and we started to fight. ...I vented my anger towards the deceased by stabbing him several times with a knife.”
Thoka fled the scene but he was arrested two days later.
He told the court he knew exactly what he was doing at the time, although “the provocation had made him reckless.”
“I apologise and beg for forgiveness and mercy,” he said.
Abel Matsena, the brother of the deceased, said the family just want to find closure following their loss. He called for the harshest punishment.
The trial was postponed to July 19 for a pre-sentencing report.