AKA hit captured on video

AKA's father, Tony Forbes and Benny Maverick, co owner of Wish nightclub, place flowers on the pavement AKA and his friend Tebello 'Tibz' Motsoane were killed on Friday night. Picture: Khaya Ngwenya/African News Agency (ANA)

AKA's father, Tony Forbes and Benny Maverick, co owner of Wish nightclub, place flowers on the pavement AKA and his friend Tebello 'Tibz' Motsoane were killed on Friday night. Picture: Khaya Ngwenya/African News Agency (ANA)

Published Feb 13, 2023


Durban - Police are working around the clock to find the gunmen who killed rapper Kiernan Forbes, 35, better known as AKA, and his friend Tebello ‘Tibz’ Motsoane, 34, on Florida Road, Durban on Friday night as pressure mounts from all sectors of society.

AKA and Motsoane had met outside Wish restaurant.

Motsoane, AKA’s former manager, who co-founded clothing label Head Honcho and was the head of Showlove Consulting, a branding and marketing company, was at a neighbouring restaurant, Authentiq, when he went out to greet the rapper.

Tebello 'Tibz' Motsoane was gunned down alongside AKA. PIC: Facebook

AKA had hours earlier posted on his Instagram account that he was at Wish and would later perform at the YuGo nightclub in Mathews Meyiwa Road.

In a video that has since become public, a man wearing a white beanie walks towards AKA and Motsoane, while they are hugging, and fires a single shot to AKA’s head, who died instantly. The gunman then runs across the road and disappears. It is unclear at this stage when and who killed Motsoane. Police spokesperson Colonel Robert Netshiunda confirmed that the province’s organised crime unit had taken over the investigations.

Netshiunda said camera footage on Florida Road would be requested to assist with their investigations. “There are no new developments to report, and we have not made any arrests yet. We are staying away from saying it was a “hit”, until we have concluded the investigation,” he said. Renee Burton, spokesperson for the Florida Road Urban Improvement Precinct, said they were co-operating with the police.

“What we really want is for justice to be served and we are doing everything in our power to assist that process. We hope, wish and want the perpetrators to be brought to book,” she said. Mzamo Cele, a security guard at a nearby shop, said it was about 10.20pm when he heard the first gunshot. He said the road was extremely busy as it was usually around that time that party goers arrived.

“I saw crowds of people rushing towards the men who were shot but I didn’t know who they were. People from a nearby restaurant pushed me inside the shop where I work because shots were still being fired and we didn’t know what was happening. I heard six gunshots,” said Cele. AKA’s father, Tony Forbes, arrived at the Phoenix mortuary yesterday along with an entourage. According to staff, AKA’s body was brought there about 3am yesterday.

Dressed in black, Forbes arrived in an SUV, and spent about an hour there before making his way to the Wish restaurant where they spent several hours with the establishment’s management. Forbes and his wife Lynn, in a statement, confirmed their son’s death and asked the public for time to mourn. The management of Wish said they had handed over all surveillance footage from Friday night to the police.

Rapper AKA was shot and killed on Florida Road on Friday night.

Businessman Moses Tembe, whose late daughter, Anele Nellie Tembe, had been in a relationship with AKA before her death two years ago, said he was shocked and felt deep pain for AKA’s parents, his daughter and their families. “Kiernan was an extraordinary and talented musician. His music contributed meaningfully to South Africa’s rich music tapestry,” said Tembe. Mxolisi Kaunda, mayor of eThekwini Municipality, has condemned the senseless killings.

“The news of AKA’s death comes as a shock as we were looking forward to seeing him perform at the Durban ICC next week.” Sonwabile Mzinyathi, secretary of the Creatives and Cultural Industry Federation of South Africa, said they were in mourning. “It saddens us that artists are not safe. It is painful, also because this happened in Durban right on Florida Road – one which should be very safe.

“We recently witnessed the death of DJ Sumbody, whose life was taken in a similar manner,” he said. Mzinyathi said the deaths of artists had a negative impact on the creative industry. “Our job is to entertain, and clearly while we aim to do that, some people are not taking kindly to it and instead see you as a threat to them,” said Mzinyathi.