Key State witness in Senzo Meyiwa murder trial passes on

A key witness in the Senzo Meyiwa murder trial has reportedly passed on.

According to Newzroom Afrika, Brigadier Philani Ndlovu died on Wednesday, after falling ill on Tuesday. He was reportedly one of the first people to respond to the scene where Meyiwa was shot dead, and was expected to appear as a State witness.

The Meyiwa murder trial is expected to resume on 30 May, after the last session ended on a dramatic note with advocate Malesela Teffo, who is representing four of the suspects in the murder trial, getting arrested.

Teffo was arrested inside the high court last month and led away in handcuffs in front of television cameras, just after proceedings in the Meyiwa murder trial were postponed.

Although Teffo’s arrest was highly criticised, the South African Police Service (SAPS) said Teffo was previously arrested by the SAPS on charges of common assault and trespassing after allegedly assaulting a female SAPS member and entering the SAPS Gauteng Provincial building, in contravention of a high court interdict prohibiting him from entering the said building.

After failing to appear before the Hillbrow Magistrate’s Court on several occasions, including on 27 January 2022, a warrant of arrest (J165) was issued and withheld, said the SAPS.

Teffo’s case was remanded to 10 February 2022. Advocate Teffo was again not in court, and bail was finally forfeited to the state. An instruction was then issued by the court for the warrant of arrest to be executed.

The SAPS said Teffo was aware of the warrant of arrest.

He appeared in the Hillbrow Magistrate’s Court on 29 April 2022, where he was granted bail of R10,000. The case was postponed to 27 May 2022.

Sifisokuhle Ntuli, Muzikawukhulelwa Sthemba Sibiya, Bongani Sandiso Ntanzi, Mthobisi Prince Ncube, and Mthokoziseni Ziphozonke Maphisa who are charged with murdering the Bafana Bafana captain in Vosloorus in 2014, will remain behind bars until the next appearance.

The suspects are already serving various sentences for convictions in other unrelated cases.

When the court resumes in May, the cross-examination will continue with advocate Zandile Mshololo, representing the fifth accused, Ntuli, taking the stand.

Additional reporting by Narissa Subramoney

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