‘I did it to save my family …’

2009-07-25 00:00

“I WOKE up at 5 am and prepared breakfast for my son and then I led him to the police station,” said Bafanyana Bhengu (58) of Masukwana informal settlement in Pietermaritzburg.

Bhengu’s son, Zenzele Ngcobo (23), together with Zokusho Malembe (22), appeared in court on Wednesday on murder charges.

Bhengu, the man who handed Ngcobo over to the police for the murder of a youngster who died defending street kids, said he did it to protect his family.

He told Weekend Witness he feared that his family would be attacked by a mob of angry residents.

“The situation was tense, the community had caught one of the suspects and he had a gaping wound in the head as a result. On Sunday evening, there were talks that I was hiding my son, but he had not returned [home].

“When he arrived at about 10 pm, I asked him what had happened and he told me his side of the story. I was satisfied, but I told him he would have to tell that to the magistrate.”

Bhengu said his son showed confidence and did not object to going to the police. “Nobody knows whether he is guilty or not, but I could not let him die in front of his ailing mother, especially when he has not been given a fair chance in a court of law.”

Bhengu is a shoemaker who operates from the Masukwana (East) Street bus rank. “I am glad and relieved that my son is behind bars, because my family would have been devastated if something worse happened to him,” he said.

His son was arrested after Nhlanhla Bhengu (20) was stabbed to death when he allegedly tried to stop the robbery of two street kids.

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