Tense exchange at Jub Jub trial
Johannesburg - There was a tense exchange between a defence witness and the prosecutor at the murder trial of musician Molemo "Jub Jub" Maarohanye and his co-accused Themba Tshabalala in the Protea Magistrate's court on Thursday.
Tumelo Mokoka, who was a passenger in Maarohanye's car at the time of the accident, was responding to prosecutor Raymond Mathenjwa.
"Chief, I'm not a lawyer to remember every aspect," said Mokoka.
Asked why he had left out crucial aspects about the accident in his statement to police, Mokoka replied: "No answer."
"Do you know children were killed in this matter? You are not going to channel my questioning," said Mathenjwa.
"So you want to channel my answer?" asked Mokoka.
Court testimony differs from police statement
The State alleges that Mokoka's version in his court testimony differs from that in his statement.
In his statement to police, Mokoka said he saw Tshabalala's car collide with Maarohanye's.
However, in his evidence in court, he said he only heard a loud bang on the right side of Maarohanye's car.
Maarohanye and Tshabalala are charged with murder, attempted murder, reckless or negligent driving, and driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs.
They were allegedly drag racing their Mini Coopers along Mdlalose Drive in Protea North, Soweto, on March 8 2010 when one of the cars ploughed into a group of school pupils.
Four schoolboys were killed and two others were severely injured.
‘Jub Jub killed our children’
Cross-examined by advocate Mlungiseleli Soviti, for Tshabalala, Mokoka told the court that Tshabalala was slapped at the scene of the accident.
"One guy slapped Themba twice across the face," he told the court.
He said it was then that he realised that the crowd wanted to assault them and he asked a traffic officer to arrange a van for them where they could be kept for their own safety.
He said the crowd got angry when they recognised Maarohanye. A woman screamed: "Jub Jub has killed our children."
Soviti told him that Tshabalala would deny that he was slapped at the scene of the accident.
Sporting braided hair and wearing a black jacket, Maarohanye sat with his head bowed, raising it only to jot notes for his lawyer Ike Motloung and to glance at the public gallery.
Tshabalala raised his head during the proceedings.
The trial continues.