Murderer sentenced for killing lover

2016-10-06 06:00

WHEN police reservist, Ntombi Jula (36), arrived home one evening with her nine-month-old daughter in her arms, she had no idea that was the last time she would see her children, friends and family.

Her lover, Maviyo Nelson Mthwane (42), approached her with a semi-automatic pistol and shot her in the chest, leaving her in agony, while he threw the stolen firearm in a rubbish bin - he had stolen the weapon from a policeman.

She went into a coma, and two months later, died.

Mthwane was sentenced to 20 effective years’ for murder, unlawful possession of ammunition, unlawful possession of a firearm and theft.

Only Mthwane knows the details of that evening in May 2015, but he has refused to divulge the events that led him to kill the mother of his daughter.

The court heard how Jula’s brother had intervened in the couple’s arguments on several occasions. This time, however, he could not stand up to an armed man and left the house. He feels that his intervention could have saved his sister, and lives with regret.

After Mthwane shot Jula, her 13-year-old son arrived and was first to see her, and is undergoing counselling for what he saw and tells his grandparents he wishes he could also die.

Judgment and sentencing was passed at Port Shepstone Magistrate’s Court on Thursday in what the magistrate, Nonesi Dlamini, described as a typical lover’s quarrel­.

“How do you kill the person that you appreciate, love and adore? We hear of many crimes in court that are professed to have be done in the name of love,” she said.

She said there was no English word to describe Mthwane as he had killed before and served 10 years for the murder.

“The only word I can think of is a Zulu word – iqunga,” [a desire to kill]. There is no place for you in society and you have blood on your hands. That is going to stay on your conscience, that is if you even have a conscience,” she said.

She said although the court is imposed to regard rehabilitation when sentencing, she asked how one is supposed to do that with this accused, who was released from jail in 2012, only to commit murder again in 2015.

“This case is no different to the Oscar Pistorius case, but I won’t be guided by the sentence he received,” said Dlamini.

“You are 40-year-old [man] and you are still killing people so it is clear that this is the path you have chosen … such barbaric incidents will not be tolerated.”

Mthwane was also declared unfit to possess a firearm.

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