For­mer premier speaks out over mur­der ru­mours

Zululand Observer - Monday - - ZO NEWS - Or­rin Singh

FOR­MER KZN Premier Senzo Mchunu has wel­comed the ar­rest of two sus­pects for the 2015 mur­der of his body­guard, Xolani Nkosi (24). Mchunu spoke ex­clu­sively to the ZO about the mur­der and said at one stage he had been named as a prime sus­pect in the case. ‘To me per­son­ally it is a sig­nif­i­cant de­vel­op­ment in the sense that shortly after the mur­der, the is­sue was shrouded in al­le­ga­tions and ru­mours, par­tic­u­larly di­rected against me.’

La­belled as an erst­while prime sus­pect, I’m ob­vi­ously re­lieved about the ar­rests

His sen­ti­ments were ex­pressed in the wake of the ar­rests of Du­misani Ce­bekhulu (26) and Ntuthuko Mkhwanazi (24), who ap­peared in the Em­pan­geni Mag­is­trate’s Court last Tues­day, charged with the mur­der of Nkosi at Du­misane Makhaye Vil­lage on 17 July, 2015. The ZO pre­vi­ously re­ported that Nkosi’s bul­let-rid­dled body was found in a state ve­hi­cle at his home after he was shot by three men trav­el­ling in a VW Golf. The two ac­cused face fur­ther charges of armed rob­bery and at­tempted car­jack­ing. Ac­cord­ing to the KZN Hawks Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Of­fi­cer, Cap­tain Sim­phiwe Mh­longo, a third sus­pect is still at large. Ce­bekhulu and Mkhwanazi were re­manded in cus­tody and the case post­poned to 6 No­vem­ber for fur­ther in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

Re­venge at­tack

At the time of Nkosi’s mur­der, ru­mours sug­gested it was a re­venge at­tack in re­sponse to the death of ANC Re­gional Chair­per­son for the Musa Dladla Re­gion and Thun­gulu District Mu­nic­i­pal­ity Deputy Mayor, Thu­lani Mashaba (42). Mashaba, who al­legedly had been aligned to a fac­tion op­posed to Mchunu, was killed in a car ac­ci­dent on the N2 near Bal­lito eight days prior to Nkosi’s mur­der. At the time, po­lit­i­cal ten­sions were high against a back­drop of deep di­vi­sions within the pro­vin­cial ANC, and ru­mours sur­faced that the anti-Mchunu fac­tion ques­tioned whether the crash was an ac­ci­dent, be­liev­ing it could have been a planned hit. Ac­cord­ing to Mchunu, al­le­ga­tions emerged that he had a hand in the mur­der of Nkosi. ‘They said I in­structed him to as­sas­si­nate Mashaba. I was shocked by that.’ Mchunu said the case had changed hands sev­eral times and was passed on from the SAPS to the In­de­pen­dent Po­lice In­ves­tiga­tive Di­rec­torate (IPID), be­fore fi­nally be­ing left in the hands of the Hawks. ‘La­belled as an erst­while prime sus­pect, I’m ob­vi­ously re­lieved about the ar­rests, as will Nkosi’s fam­ily be who could not get clo­sure for the past three years. Mchunu said he sensed some­thing sin­is­ter about the case after re­ceiv­ing re­li­able in­for­ma­tion dur­ing the in­ves­ti­ga­tion that a ‘com­rade’ had been put­ting pres­sure on po­lice to in­ves­ti­gate him. ‘What is wor­ry­ing is that there was no ev­i­dence link­ing me to the mur­der and it is not the duty of the po­lice to pur­sue po­lit­i­cal agen­das.’

For­mer KZN Premier Senzo Mchunu

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