‘No bail’ call for driver

2016-03-08 11:03
Mcabango Hlongwa appeared in the Hew Hanover Magistrate’s Court.

Mcabango Hlongwa appeared in the Hew Hanover Magistrate’s Court. (Ian Carbutt, The Witness)

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Pietermaritzburg - Supporters of alleged hit-and-run accident victims Sithabile Mkhasibe and her boyfriend Xolani Nxele arrived at New Hanover court on Monday armed with banners to oppose bail for the couple’s alleged killer.

Both victims were qualified engineers.

The anticipated bail application by Mcabango Hlongwa (37) did not materialise yesterday but instead was scheduled to be held next Monday, March 14.

Since Hlongwa’s previous court appearance, the state added a second count of culpable homicide to the charge sheet in connection with Mkhasibe’s death. This follows the discovery of her body on March 1.

Hlongwa is also charged with driving under the influence of alcohol and failing to stop after an accident.

He has not yet pleaded to any of the allegations.

Hlongwa again made only a fleeting appearance in the crowded courthouse before magistrate Rod Stewart yesterday while supporters of the two victims sat quietly in the gallery. Many clutched posters announcing their opposition to his release on bail.

Most of the banners were in Zulu but one in English proclaimed: “Cold-blooded animal must be in cage for the rest of his life. We need justice.”

A man seated in the public gallery told The Witness they were there because they believe that what happened to Mkhasibe and Nxele was wrong and that the man charged with killing them should not get bail.

Mkhasibe was initially reported missing after the accident and a desperate search ensued for her body.

It was reported that a Honda Ballade car allegedly struck Mkhasibe and Nxele as they were jogging together along Main Road in Dalton on the evening of February 26.

The driver allegedly did not stop and continued to drive with Nxele’s body on the bonnet and Mkhasibe pressed up against the windscreen.

Nxele eventually fell off the bonnet and was later declared dead at the accident scene, but there was no sign of Mkhasibe.

The Witness reported that her brother said the police had told him that the driver of the car that allegedly struck the couple had admitted that he dumped her body in a sugar cane field in Dalton. However, he allegedly could not recall the exact spot.

Four days later police recovered Mkhasibe’s body in grass at the side of a remote road in the Dalton area.

The incident caused shock and outrage among local community members.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  murder  |  court  |  jogger

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