The alleged mastermind behind Tshegofatso Pule’s murder, Ntuthuko Shoba. Picture: Timothy Bernard/African News Agency (ANA)
The alleged mastermind behind Tshegofatso Pule’s murder, Ntuthuko Shoba. Picture: Timothy Bernard/African News Agency (ANA)

Tshegofatso Pule was scared the father of her child might harm her or their unborn baby

By Boitumelo Metsing Time of article published Apr 23, 2021

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Johannesburg - Whatsaap messages between Ntuthuko Shoba and slain Tshegofatso Pule were extensively debated in Shoba’s hearing at the Roodepoort Magistrate’s Court on Thursday.

Shoba, who is the alleged mastermind behind the murder of eight months pregnant Pule, appeared in court for his second bail application based on the defence’s new facts.

In Shoba’s affidavit, he argues that Pule was allegedly in a relationship with Mzikayise Malephane, who pleaded guilty to killing her, and took a plea deal with the State, implicating Shoba as the mastermind.

Shoba said this information was shared with him by a cellmate who Malephane had allegedly confided in.

But the State dismissed Shoba’s new facts and said they have messages he wasn’t the concerned father he proclaimed to be in his previous statement.

State prosecutor Paseka Temeki said: “The accused (Shoba) frustrated the deceased (Pule). We have phone messages that prove he didn’t want the baby and that he was in constant communication with Mzikayise Malephane.”

In the investigating officer’s affidavit read out by Temeki, WhatsApp messages between Shoba and Pule revealed Pule was afraid that Shoba might do something to harm her or the baby. The texts showed Shoba was dismissive of Pule’s request for support during her pregnancy.

They also revealed that Pule had been impregnated twice by Shoba and she had terminated the first pregnancy.

Another message from Pule to Shoba revealed he was capable of anything to ensure he didn’t become a father.

Pule’s uncle, Tumisang Katake, said the was shocked by the revelations in court. “It’s shocking to us as the family, that this was actually the second child that she was carrying from the very same man.

“We didn’t know we’d been robbed of three lives as a family by the same man. I don’t have the strength to actually tell you how I feel. I am rattled emotionally (and) so is the family,” said Katake.

The distraught uncle further told the media that the family had no idea of the difficulties that Pule had to go through during her pregnancy as they pictured Shoba as caring towards her and the baby.

Katake said: “What happened today took us by surprise, it rattled us. It’s something that no one really thought of. We didn’t see it coming, even when I was still in court and all those revelations were made.

“I couldn’t help but wonder about the difficulties that Tshego went through in her pregnancy. All the reports that we got was that he was sending the money and money for Uber rides to make sure Tshego was fine. This is the picture of the person that was caring for Tshego and the baby. Now there’s another picture again of a person who didn’t care, and you begin to wonder whether this person really loved Tshegofatso and I don’t think he did, that’s my opinion,” he said.

The court proceedings also detailed cellphone records that showed that on the day of Pule’s murder, Shoba contacted Malephane 23 times from an unregistered phone and a couple of times from May 30 to June 14 last year.

Pule’s body was found with multiple stab wound hanging on a tree in an open veld in Roodepoort.

Shoba allegedly conspired with Malephane to kill Pule for R70 000.

The case has been postponed to Monday.

The Star

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