Anni Dewani's killer asks for forgiveness

2012-08-27 20:00
Mziwamadoda Qwabe (AFP)

Mziwamadoda Qwabe (AFP)

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Cape Town - A convicted killer of honeymooner Anni Dewani, Mziwamadoda Qwabe, asked her family for forgiveness in the Western Cape High Court on Monday.

"I truly and humbly regret and apologise about what happened to your daughter. If ever, or whenever, they can find it in their hearts to forgive me, I'm sorry from the bottom of my heart," the 27-year-old Qwabe said.

He was testifying in the trial of the alleged gunman in the murder, Xolile Mngeni, who has pleaded not guilty.

Anni's father, Vinod Hindocha and a cousin, earlier listened to his testimony from the side bench. He described how the Dewanis were hijacked and robbed. They had been on honeymoon in Cape Town when she was shot and killed in the apparent hijacking, on 13 November 2010.

Qwabe said he realised it would not be easy for the family to forgive what happened to Anni.

Anni's relatives wept as Qwabe pleaded for forgiveness. They wore a photo of a smiling Anni on their chests.

Qwabe is serving a 25-year jail term for his role in the murder plot, which was allegedly masterminded by her husband Shrien, who has denied the allegations.

Qwabe earlier described the last few moments of Anni's life. He said he and Mngeni were dropped off in Gugulethu on the evening of 13 November 2010, to make the hit.

They were left at NY112 road and walked to "the agreed intersection" of the NY112 and NY108.

There they lay in wait for the shuttle carrying the Dewanis, as agreed to by shuttle driver Zola Tongo.

"I was urinating against the fence, when one of us shouted: 'Here, the vehicle is coming'. The accused stopped the vehicle and pointed a firearm on the driver's side," Qwabe told the court.

They forced driver Tongo, who was jailed for 18 years for his part in the murder, into the back seat.

Qwabe said he drove the silver VW Sharan "very fast" towards Khayelitsha.

Mngeni sat in the front passenger seat. Anni Dewani sat in the back behind the driver. Her husband was in the middle and Tongo next to him.

Qwabe said he asked for Tongo's phone and dropped Tongo off at the intersection of the NY1 and NY111. Before he got out the car, Tongo told them the money for the hit was in the cubby hole behind the front passenger seat.

The car then sped through the Nkanini informal settlement and into the Kuyasa township, where Shrien was ordered out and told to go to a nearby house. The car drove off again.

"While driving between Ilitha Park and Ndlovini, I heard a gunshot," Qwabe said.

The men stopped the vehicle in Ilitha Park, looked for the bullet casing and ran off into the night. Qwabe said Anni Dewani was lying dead on the back seat.

They discarded a small lady's bag and counted the money for the hit when far away.

"We found it was R10 000. Not R15 000. We split it in half. He also showed me another stash of cash which I think he got from the husband... We counted, it was R4 000 and something."

Qwabe said Mngeni showed him two Blackberry cellphones, a brown Nokia phone, and a silver digital camera.

A gun, ammunition, a cellphone, watch and bracelet lay on a table in front of Qwabe as he testified. He pointed out the gun as the one used to kill Dewani.

The trial continues.

Read more on:    mziwamadoda qwabe  |  anni hindocha  |  xolile mngeni  |  shrien dewani  |  cape town  |  honeymoon hijacking

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