De­mol­ish threat to Senzo’s un­fin­ished dream home

Build­ing rights could be re­voked by tra­di­tional author­ity,prop­erty over­grown

The Sunday Independent - - NEWS -

SENZO Meyiwa’s in­com­plete dream home in the south of Dur­ban could soon be de­mol­ished. The tra­di­tional author­ity in Adams Mis­sion has warned that the slain Bafana Bafana goal­keeper’s own­er­ship rights could be re­voked by chief KS Makhanya, if his fam­ily fails fur­ther to con­sult with them.

Meyiwa’s fam­ily has never met with the tra­di­tional chief since his death in 2014, more than 1 000 days ago this week.

Mys­tery still sur­rounds the mur­der of the former Or­lando Pi­rates cap­tain in Oc­to­ber 2014 by un­known gun­men at his girl­friend Kelly Khu­malo’s house in Vosloorus, Gaut­eng. Al­most three years on, his killers are still at large.

Meyiwa, Khu­malo and her two chil­dren, her mother Ntombi, her sis­ter Zandile, Chicco Twala’s son Longwe, Mthokozisi Twala and Meyiwa’s friend from Dur­ban, Tumelo Mad­lala, were all re­port­edly in the house when the fa­tal gun­shots were fired.

A R250 000 re­ward promised by the po­lice in 2014 has done lit­tle to crack the case.

On Wed­nes­day, when the Sun­day Tri­bune team vis­ited what would have been Meyiwa’s mas­sive five-bed­room re­tire­ment home, in the lush green hills the in­com­plete build­ing was cov­ered by over­grown shrubs and bush.

The lo­cal in­duna , Mbon­geni Makhanya, said if the prop­erty re­mained ne­glected as it has been for the past three years, the tra­di­tional author­ity would re­pos­sess it and knock down the walls.

Meyiwa started build­ing in 2013, and at the time of his death, the roof was still to be erected. A neigh­bour, who sold the plot of land to the slain goal­keeper and his wife, Man­disa Mkhize, said the price of the land in 2012 was R30 000.

Meyiwa was known to make reg­u­lar vis­its when con­struc­tion be­gan, lo­cals said.

Makhanya urged Senzo’s fa­ther, Sam Meyiwa, to ap­proach the chief, to ex­plain the fam­ily’s fu­ture plans for the house.

“They need to come to our tra­di­tional court and change the own­er­ship of the house. Fail­ure to do that could re­sult in the Meyiwa’s los­ing the own­er­ship of the site.

“We need to know what is hold­ing them up in com­plet­ing the build­ing of the house. We can also ad­vise them to sell the house so that they could ben­e­fit from its sale,” he said.

“If time passes with no word from the fam­ily, we will even­tu­ally de­mol­ish the walls and re­turn the land to the chief be­cause the land be­longs to him. “They should use the op­por­tu­nity to come for­ward. It has been three years since con­struc­tion work be­gan. Makhanya said that they too were at a loss af­ter Meyiwa’s death be­cause he would have en­cour­aged other pro­fes­sion­als to be­come res­i­dents of the area, and that the area has drawn town­ship dwellers to build homes there. W h e n Meyiwa’s fa­ther was con­tacted this week, h e said he was un­aware he was ex­pected to ap­proach the tra­di­tional author­ity. “I will visit the chief this week to tell him about our wish to con­tinue with the build­ing. He said a lack of funds had stopped the fam­ily from com­plet­ing the pro­ject. “We were hop­ing that Senzo’s money from his es­tate would be paid to us so that we can con­tinue with the build­ing. At this stage, we are broke. We are strug­gling to look af­ter his three chil­dren,” he said.

How­ever, two of Meyiwa’s other chil­dren from Man­disa Mkhize and Khu­malo, live with their re­spec­tive moth­ers.

In April, the then newly ap­pointed po­lice min­is­ter Fik­ile Mbalula promised that he would pri­ori­tise Meyiwa’s case.

There have been no pub­lic pro­nounce­ments from the min­is­ter since.

“I did con­tact Mbalula last month, he promised to get back to us but I am yet to get feed­back on the mat­ter. How­ever, I am quite aware that he is a busy per­son, crack­ing this case de­mands his ded­i­ca­tion. I can­not say I am dis­ap­pointed with him at this stage, I just need to give him more time to in­ves­ti­gate,” Meyiwa said.

Mbalula’s spokesper­son, Esethu Hasane, said his of­fice could not com­ment on the case be­cause it was still un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

Mean­while, Gogo Zungu, who sold the plot of land five years ago, re­called how she was ex­cited when Meyiwa and his wife Man­disa ar­rived to pur­chase the site.

“Meyiwa was very kind, he treated me like I was his mother. Ev­ery time he vis­ited, he stopped by my house and gave me money by the hun­dreds. It was a very kind ges­ture from him,” Zungu re­called.

The frail woman, now in her 70s, said the former Bafana Bafana goal­keeper would some­times buy gro­ceries for her fam­ily.

An­other neigh­bour, Samkelo Cele, shared the “good times” they had when Meyiwa vis­ited the site. He said Meyiwa was a calm man and a peo­ple’s per­son.

“He brought beers to share with am­a­gents (the gents) and the con­struc­tion work­ers. His aim was to set­tle down with his wife and kids once his play­ing days were over.

“But he also wanted to oc­ca­sion­ally sleep over at his place when he was in Dur­ban for soc­cer matches and dur­ing the fes­tive hol­i­days,” said Cele.

He said hear­ing of Meyiwa’s death was pain­ful.

“He was not a vi­o­lent per­son. We still need clo­sure on his death but it seems like the po­lice are re­luc­tant to do their job,” he said.

Cele said the com­mu­nity was also con­cerned that the house could be used by drug ad­dicts if it was left ne­glected.

Meyiwa said he planned to have a mass prayer at the fam­ily house in uM­lazi in Oc­to­ber to pray for his son’s killers to be ar­rested.

Na­tional po­lice spokesper­son Vish Naidoo said: “The in­ves­ti­ga­tion into Meyiwa’s death is still con­tin­u­ing and there has been no new de­vel­op­ments.

“We urge any­one, who has in­for­ma­tion that could as­sist us in this in­ves­ti­ga­tion, to please come for­ward.” “SENZO ran into my hands he had blood on his chest and back. I knew he had been shot.”

This is the scene singer Kelly Khu­malo de­scribed to fans at her Up Close and Per­sonal with Kelly Khu­malo con­cert in Joburg on Thurs­day evening.

She shared slain Senzo Meyiwa’s last mo­ments with the crowd when she played a voice clip re­call­ing the de­tails of the fate­ful Sun­day, Oc­to­ber 26, 2014, that claimed the life of the South African goal­keeper.

The Bafana Bafana and Or­lando Pi­rates cap­tain died af­ter be­ing shot at Kelly’s fam­ily home in Vosloorus, Ekurhu­leni, dur­ing an al­leged rob­bery.

“We were hav­ing a great day. Just as we were about to leave, there was a bang at the door and it opened with two guys walked in. One pointed a gun at me, de­manded money and cell­phones and I ran to my sis­ter’s room.

“He fol­lowed me. I pushed the door. Try­ing to close it. He pushed back and I pushed again.

“Up un­til to­day I do not know why he gave up on push­ing, but he did for some rea­son,” she said.

Kelly ex­plained that as she fought for her life she re­alised that she didn’t know where her chil­dren were. She knew they were in the house, but she didn’t know where.

“Later on I re­alised that my chil­dren were in the house. When I opened the door, my mom, Senzo and his friends were fight­ing the in­trud­ers. My son watched it all hap­pen,” she said.

At the time, it was al­leged that two men en­tered the house and de­manded cell­phones, money and other valu­ables.

A tear­ful Kelly told the crowd how she rushed to her son’s room when she heard two gun­shots and when Senzo ran to her cov­ered in blood she knew he had been shot.

“Then Senzo ran into my hands. I thought he was try­ing to pro­tect me from the in­trud­ers but he had blood on his chest and back. That’s when I knew he had been shot.

“We couldn’t even wait for the am­bu­lance to ar­rive. We rushed him to hospi­tal. I did ev­ery­thing I could. I didn’t want him to think I gave up on him. I prayed un­til I had no more words to say,” she said.

“South Africa may have lost its No 1 (goal)keeper. I lost my No 1 fan.” Senzo’s killers are still at large. In May this year, top pri­vate in­ves­ti­ga­tor Rick Crouch said the in­ves­ti­ga­tion into the mur­der of Meyiwa could now be de­scribed as a “cold case”.

“Po­lice have got noth­ing in their in­ves­ti­ga­tion,” Crouch said.

Any­one who may have in­for­ma­tion which could lead to the ar­rest of the per­pe­tra­tors of the shoot­ing death, should con­tact Crime Stop on 08600 10111 or SMS Crime Line at 32211.

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