Senzo Meyiwa trial: Postmortem contradicts key witness

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Muzikawukhulelwa S’Tembu Sibiya, Bongani Sandiso Ntanzi, Mthobisi Prince Mncube, Mthokoziseni Ziphozonke Maphisa and Sifisokuhle Nkani Ntuli appear in court. Photo: Gallo Images/ OJ Koloti
Muzikawukhulelwa S’Tembu Sibiya, Bongani Sandiso Ntanzi, Mthobisi Prince Mncube, Mthokoziseni Ziphozonke Maphisa and Sifisokuhle Nkani Ntuli appear in court. Photo: Gallo Images/ OJ Koloti


The trial into the murder of Orlando Pirates and Bafana Bafana skipper Senzo Meyiwa took a surprise turn when a postmortem illustration appeared to contradict the evidence given by state witness and Meyiwa’s close friend Tumelo Madlala regarding the entrance point of the bullet that killed the goalkeeper who was 27 years old at the time of his death.

During cross-examination on Thursday, Madlala struggled to explain a finding by a postmortem report, which showed that Meyiwa was shot by a person who stood in front of him.

Madlala had earlier told the court that a gunshot was fired by an alleged intruder who was situated behind them, as he and Meyiwa were fighting with the second intruder near the exit door.

READ: I did not clearly see Senzo Meyiwa's shooter - Witness

Defence advocate Zandile Mshololo emphasised that the entry point of the bullet was found to be in front and a reasonable person would think that somebody else would also have been injured because the bullet was shot at close range and exited Meyiwa’s body. 

“The entry was situated over the right anterior chest wall a centimetre to the right of the middle and a centimeter above… This wound is consistent with a contact bullet wound,” said Mshololo, while reading the report.

Mshololo reminded Madlala that he said the second assailant was standing next to the door, therefore, the gun-carrying intruder was situated behind Meyiwa.

“The deceased was facing another intruder while at the door. At the back of the deceased, it was you, but the deceased was shot while holding the second person's hand, and you were punching him.  When the shot was fired, it went through Senzo and it exited,” she said.

At this point, State advocate George Baloyi objected to Mshololo's line of questioning, citing that the inference was that there were subsequent shots which were fired.

READ: Meyiwa murder trial wrap: witness contradicts himself

Said Baloyi:

The point of the matter is that counsel is labouring under the impression that the first shot is the one that struck the deceased, whereas the witness is saying that he heard the first shot and ran into the bedroom. That is the issue at this stage.

Lawyer for accused number one to four Timothy Thobane said they would lodge an application with another court to review the current proceedings, citing that there was a violation of the Constitutional rights of his clients.

He argued that Madlala was giving evidence as if his head was on the block, considering that his name was mentioned on the list of people who could be prosecuted pending the outcome of the current trial.

The trial continues.

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