Family and friends of the late Tshegofatso Pule outside the Johannesburg High Court. File picture: Bhekikhaya Mabaso/African News Agency(ANA)
Family and friends of the late Tshegofatso Pule outside the Johannesburg High Court. File picture: Bhekikhaya Mabaso/African News Agency(ANA)

Alleged mastermind in Tshegofatso Pule murder to remain in jail as case is postponed

By Bongani Nkosi Time of article published Feb 22, 2021

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Johannesburg - The boyfriend of Tshegofatso Pule, and alleged mastermind behind the Soweto woman’s death, has made a brief appearance in court and will remain behind bars until March.

The 28-year-old heavily pregnant woman was found hanging in a tree with stab wounds when she was murdered last year.

Her boyfriend, Ntuthuko Ntokozo Shoba, a 32-year-old JSE analyst, has been charged with murder, conspiracy to commit murder and defeating the ends of justice.

Magistrate Etienne van Niekerk heard at the Roodepoort Magistrate’s Court that the State and Shoba’s lawyer agreed on a postponement for a formal bail application.

Shoba will return to court on Monday. He will spend the week in custody before arguments on whether he is fit for bail is heard.

Clad in black, Shoba kept a confident and calm figure in the dock. He posed for the media cameras without any qualms.

Journalists, relatives and friends of Pule filled the courtroom. Some were asked to go outside due to the Covid-19 compliance measures.

An angry woman shouted: “Is this him? Umasimba enja”.

The IsiZulu expression implied the woman viewed Shoba as dog sh**.

Tshegofatso Pule

Police arrested Shoba last Thursday night and in court on the following day, the man who murdered and hung Pule implicated him in the killing, alleging he was the mastermind.

Muzikayise Malephane, who police arrested a few days after Pule's killing last year, struck a deal with the State to enter a plea and reveal information about the murder.

He revealed that Shoba paid him R70 000 to kill Pule, with whom Shoba was in an alleged affair.

Malephane told the State Shoba wanted Pule dead because she was pregnant and he did not want his wife to find out.

As part of the plea, Malephane was sentenced to a 20-year jail term.

Malephane could be out on parole in 10 years.

Phindi Mjonondwane, a spokesperson for the National Prosecuting Authority, told journalists the State will oppose Shoba's bail application.

“The instruction is that the prosecutor should oppose bail on the March 1,” she said.

@BonganiNkosi87

The Star

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