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Accused Fisokuhle Ntuli was found guilty of killing Councillor Thami Goodwill Nyembe, Butiza Sandisa Mahlobo, Sphamandla Zungu, and brothers Phiwayinkosi Mcebisi and Sibusiso Zulu, by the Esikhaleni Regional Court in KwaZulu-Natal on Monday.
Additionally, Ntuli shot and severely injured Councillor Nyembe’s wife, Nolwazi Nyembe.
Four firearms and ammunition possession charges were also brought against him. One of the guns was from a police officer in Ezibeleni, Queenstown, in 2011. The SAPS stated that at the sentencing hearing, the defence team requested that a pre-sentencing report from a parole officer and a social worker be provided to the court before sentencing was passed.
The judge approved the request, and Ntuli is scheduled to return to court on 9 December 2021 for sentencing.
A multidisciplinary integrated Political Task Team in KwaZulu-Natal began investigating Ntuli on one count of murder and another of attempted murder following the shooting of the Nyembe couple in KwaNongoma, KwaZulu-Natal in 2016.
Senior Public Prosecutors, SAPS Detectives, the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigations (Hawks), Forensic Experts, and Crime Intelligence constituted the Task Team. Police spokesperson Brigadier Vishnu Naidoo explained, “Following intensive investigations by the team, Ntuli was linked to the other five murders.”
According to the SAPS, Ntuli’s reign of terror was not limited to the province’s northern regions. He is also a person of interest in several other Gauteng cases, of which the assassination of Senzo Meyiwa is one.
“The outcome of this case is expected to send out a clear message to potential anarchists of the seriousness with which the Criminal Justice System deals with serious and violent crimes throughout the country,” Brigadier Naidoo concludes.
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