Senzo Meyiwa murder case: Mthokozisi Thwala’s grilling continues as Kelly Khumalo faces more possible concert cancellations

Slain Bafana Bafana captain Senzo Meyiwa and his girlfriend, singer and actress Kelly Khumalo. File image.

Slain Bafana Bafana captain Senzo Meyiwa and his girlfriend, singer and actress Kelly Khumalo. File image.

Published Aug 5, 2023


Johannesburg - Senzo Meyiwa’s long time friend Mthokozisi Thwala continued to face a grilling in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria, while the slain goalkeeper’s girlfriend Kelly Khumalo faces possible more concert cancellations.

The defence spent much of Friday picking holes in Thwala’s testimony over what he heard and saw.

On October 26, 2014, the day the Bafana Bafana captain was gunned down he was also asked about his friend’s relationship with Khumalo.

Thwala, who was one of six people in the Vosloorus home when Meyiwa was shot, told the court yesterday that it would be difficult to answer about the nature of Meyiwa’s and Khumalo's relationship because he often wasn’t in their company. This was because of his friendship with Meyiwa’s wife, Mandisa Mkhize.

He told the court when asked if Meyiwa’s friend Tumelo Madlala was at the house that day to conduct lobola negotiations, that this was definitely not the case. He said that Meyiwa would have had to ask Mkhize for consent to take a second wife.

During cross examination advocate Zithulele Nxumalo, for accused number four, Mthokoziseni Maphisa, questioned why in Thwala’s statement he only claimed to have heard one gun shot during the incident. He answered that he might have been outside when the second gunshot was fired and that he didn’t recall hearing it.

Advocate Zandile Mshololo, representing accused number five, Fisokuhle Ntuli, also questioned Thwala about the second suspect being armed with a knife that he could not describe. The reason for this, Mshololo said, was that there was no second suspect. However, Thwala insisted there was.

Mshololo asked Thwala about who was in possession of Meyiwa’s cellphone and ID document on the day of the murder. He said he didn’t know. On Monday a new witness is set to take the stand.

Meanwhile, outside of the North Gauteng High Court, Pretoria, Khumalo’s woes continued with two concert organisers stating that they didn’t want her to be part of the line up.

On Thursday the Maseru Jazz Festival said that her appearance at the concert was put “on hold”.

“As Maseru Park, we’re here to inform you that we have seen comments about one of our guest performers, which came to [our] attention … we need to inform the public and society that we are putting Kelly Khumalo on hold,” read the statement from the organisers.

“In the interest of our jazz festival, we have taken the decision to relieve Kelly Khumalo of the obligation to perform at our festival and we acknowledge she is not guilty until proven so.”

This comes after a police expert, Colonel Lambertus Steyn, testified in court last week that Khumalo had received two calls from Ntuli. The first of these was made on August 2, 2014, and the second a week before the soccer captain’s murder. He also testified that a sim swap was done on his cellphone a day after he was killed. The surprise testimony resulted in condemnation across social media.

On Wednesday the Tribute to Women concert organisers said that Khumalo would not be appearing at the festival so that she could deal with “issues emanating from the current court proceedings”.

It is yet to be seen if other festivals will follow suit.

The Saturday Star