Sentencing after brutal murder of ‘Salvation army’ pastor, Dundee

South African Police Service

Sentencing after brutal murder of ‘Salvation army’ pastor, Dundee
Sentencing after brutal murder of 'Salvation army' pastor, Dundee

On Friday, 16 March 2018, the Dundee Regional Court convicted and sentenced three accused for murder and robbery with aggravating circumstances.

Vusumuzi Themba Mbhele (32) was sentenced to 20 years for murder, 15 years for robbery with aggravating circumstances and another 15 years for armed robbery at Dundee. Nala Dlamini (28) was sentenced to 13 years imprisonment for murder, 12 years for robbery aggravating circumstances and a further 12 for Dundee armed robbery. Aphiwe Matiwane (20) was sentenced to 10 years for murder and 10 years for armed robbery. Mbhele will serve only 25 years imprisonment, Dlamini to serve 20 years and Matiwane to serve 10 years imprisonment.

On 15 March 2015, Ezakheni Salvation Army pastor, Hamilton Zulu (47) left his home at Ezakheni to Nqutu area for business purposes. As he drove through Dundee, he picked up five hitchhikers along the road. Further on he again picked up another hitchhiker, Jabulani Kweswa who was also on his way to Nqutu.

As he was driving his Avanza vehicle towards Nqutu the last hitchhiker, Jabulani Kweswa and himself were attacked by the first five men who were initially given a lift from Dundee. Jabulani Kweswa was severely stabbed and his body was left alongside the road, thinking that he was dead. Luckily, he was taken to hospital for treatment. The accused forced the driver, Hamilton Zulu out of his driver’s seat and drove with him back to Dundee where he was forced to withdrew cash from ATM.

He was also assaulted and further took him towards Glencoe area where he was severely assaulted and his body was dumped in the bushes near Sunset Rest. In the meantime, Zulu family became suspicious as he never came back home and he was reported as missing at Ezaklheni police station. On 23 March 2015, his vehicle was circulated and Hattingspruit police found it abandoned at Nyanyadu area.

On further investigation, five suspects were arrested at Glencoe area who were seen driving the same vehicle by the community members. They were found in possession of perfumes belonging to the pastor. One of the suspects made a pointing out and the body of Zulu was found near Sunset Rest, Glencoe. A case of murder was opened at Glencoe police station and five suspects were charged accordingly. Jabulani Kweswa survived and was a key witness in this case. Through court hearing, two suspects were acquitted and the other three were convicted and sentenced accordingly.

The KwaZulu-Natal Acting Provincial Commissioner, Major General Bheki Langa commended the sentence handed down to the accused.

“I praised the teamwork showed by the members in investigating this case that resulted in the conviction of three accused. I further praised the witness who survived the attack and managed to identify the perpetrators during the identification parade. These senseless killers will spend the rest of their life in prison,” he said.

South Africa Today – South Africa News

SOURCESouth African Police Service