Fatal shot over Shembe beard ‘was self-defence’

2012-08-23 00:00

A FORMER security guard admitted in the regional court here that he shot Coin security group regional manager Daniel van der Spuy in May 2011, but said he thought that the manager was going to shoot him at the time.

Bonginkosi Nene (47) told the court that he “did not trust” Van der Spuy and that he had intended defending himself.

Nene has pleaded not guilty before regional court magistrate Kevin Leat to a charge of murder. The state alleges that Nene shot and killed Van der Spuy in anger on May 27 last year after being informed that a disciplinary committee had recommended that he be dismissed for refusing to shave off his beard.

Nene is a member of the Shembe church, which does not permit him to shave off his beard.

In his evidence yesterday Nene said he had been called into Van der Spuy’s office to be told the outcome of the disciplinary hearing, and alleged that when he began posing questions to Van der Spuy through an interpreter, the manager became agitated and ordered him to leave the office. He claimed that Van der Spuy told him if he did not, he would shoot him. The interpreter left the office after warning Nene to “be careful”.

Nene testified that he’d fired three shots (two of which were “warning”) at the manager in quick succession, in order to defend himself.

He said he and Van der Spuy had never got along and repeatedly said he “did not trust him”.

The case is proceeding.

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