Some accused in Prince Manzini’s murder not ANC members

Some accused in Prince Manzini's murder not ANC members
DIED IN VAIN: The KaBokweni Magistrates Court this week heard how men were recruited from outside the ANC to disrupt a branch general meeting, the violence that ensued thereafter left Price Manzini dead. PICTURE BY Facebook

The matter is returning to court on 29 September 2020.

The KaBokweni Magistrates Court this week heard that some of the 5 men accused of murdering Mbombela ward 32 ANC member Prince Manzini are not members of the party.

Sowetan reported that the police’s investigating officer Captain Simon Mlotshwa testified in court where the 5 accused were making an appearance and said the men were simply hired to come disrupt an ANC meeting.

Mlotshwa said the men were working for the differing factions ahead of the 13th provincial conference that got suspended due to escalating violence during BGMs as well as global problems brought by the Covid-19 pandemic. 

The police officer told the court that they are looking at 15 people to be added to the case.

He said despite them not being members of the ANC “but were called from outside to come and beat the other faction”.

“The division within the ANC led to Manzini’s death,” Mlotshwa told the court Wednesday 29 July 2020.

The accused are identified as 37-year-old Nhlanhla Mabuza, Given Ngomane (31) and three brothers, Sikhumbuzo (33), Deon (27) and Duncan (31) Lekhuleni.

They were arrested on 17 July 2020.

Sources said only Mabuza and Ngomane belonged to the ANC branch and the others were brought from outside to disrupt the meeting as the branch was seen as to be supporting acting chairman Mandla Ndlovu against Premier Refilwe Mtshweni-Tsipane’s ambition to become provincial chairman.

The 45-year-old Manzini – described as kind someone who “could not kill a fly” – died on 15 March 2020 when he got badly beaten up by a mob supporting Tsipane for the position of provincial chairperson.

The meeting was meant to nominate candidates for the 13th Mpumalanga congress.

“During the fight many people were beaten, about 10 of them. We are looking at about 15 people in the case and we have already taken statements and we are expecting them to be added on the case,” said Mlotshwa. 

They face charges of murder, assault, intimidation and public violence. 

(edited by ZK)

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