Coligny murder trial: 'You are not telling the truth' – Defence tells witness

2018-06-07 17:42
The key witness in the Coligny murder trial Bonakele Pakisi. (Jeanette Chabalala, News24)

The key witness in the Coligny murder trial Bonakele Pakisi. (Jeanette Chabalala, News24)

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The defence in the Coligny murder trial has accused a key witness in the matter of lying under oath and contradicting his initial statement to the police. 

Bonakele Pakisi, who is allegedly the only person to have witnessed 16-year-old Matlhomola Moshoeu being thrown from a moving vehicle, took the stand for the second day of the trial of Pieter Doorewaard, 27, and Philip Schutte, 34. 

The men are accused of killing Matlhomola in Coligny last year. The pair claim they caught the teenager stealing a sunflower on April 20, 2017. 

READ: Coligny murder trial: Cop told me that evidence had disappeared, says witness

Doorewaard and Schutte said they intended to drive him to the local police station, but he jumped off their bakkie along the way and broke his neck.

Under cross-examination by advocate Hennie du Plessis, for Doorewaard, Pakisi told the court how Matlhomola lay in the vehicle while he was severely injured. 

"When the van was moving and shaking, you could see blood coming from his mouth. A lot of blood was flowing," Pakisi testified. 

Different statements

However, in an attempt to punch holes in his testimony, Du Plessis asked Pakisi about the routes the accused used when they drove him around with Matlhomola.

He accused Pakisi of contradicting himself about certain locations he was taken to and said his testimony was different from what he had initially said in his statement. 

"I put it to you that you are not telling the truth. You are changing your versions," Du Plessis told Pakisi. 

"No, it is not true," Pakisi replied. 

WATCH: A News24 Documentary | Stealing Sunflowers

Pakisi said he was not happy with the first statement he made to Warrant Officer Popo Seponkane, claiming that it was never read back to him. 

He also said it included information that he did not mention. 

Pakisi had earlier painted Seponkane as an officer who may have been grossly negligent in the case. 

He claimed that Seponkane failed to gather crucial evidence after he showed him where Matlhomola had been thrown from a moving bakkie. Instead, the officer allegedly told him that the evidence he had pointed out had "disappeared".

'You keep changing your versions'

He said the only statement that was correct was the one he gave to Colonel Petrus Nkosi. 

"I read the second statement, they even read it to me and I understood the content."

But Du Plessis read out parts of the statement which was apparently taken by Colonel Nkosi which mentions other places the accused apparently drove to with Pakisi and Matlhomola. 

However, Pakisi said some of the things mentioned in the statement were incorrect. 

"You keep changing your versions," Du Plessis said. 

Matlhomola's death sparked protests in the area with some residents claiming he was killed because he was black. Several houses and businesses were burnt to the ground.

The accused have pleaded not guilty to charges of murder, intimidation, kidnapping, theft, the unlawful possession of a firearm and ammunition and pointing a firearm.

Doorewaard and Schutte are out on R5 000 bail each.

Read more on:    coligny  |  court

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