“Simbarara” sentenced to life!

The Mpumalanga Division of the High Court convicted and sentenced Velly Teddy “Simbarara” Thwala to life imprisonment yesterday.

The court found him guilty for the premeditated murder of his girlfriend, Nontobeko Nosipho Msithini. The court also declared Thwala unfit to possess a firearm in terms of the Firearms Control 60 of 2000. He has been in custody since February 2023. In court, the convicted murderer conducted his own defence.

READ | Murder accused denies killing lover

He denied killing his girlfriend and pleaded not guilty. State Prosecutor Antionette Nkosi led the testimonies of several witnesses. One witness, Thandi Valencia Shabangu, told the court that she peeped through the window and heard Thwala assaulting the deceased until she became unconscious. Other witnesses testified that they witnessed the accused pushing the trolley with the deceased’s body to the dumping site. The arresting officer also testified from what he observed when arresting the accused. The confession Thwala made upon his arrest was also admitted in court.

The deceased, Nosipho Msithini.
Community members outside Barberton Magistrate’s Court in February 2023.

READ MORE | Murder accused to represent himself after dumping lawyer

Arguing for a suitable sentence, Nkosi addressed the court about the seriousness of the offence Thwala was convicted of and the prevalence of femicide cases in the country. Nkosi said, the convicted murderer showed no signs of remorse for his actions and, therefore, not a candidate for rehabilitation. During the sentencing, Judge Hank Roloefse said the deceased died a painful death in the hands of his lover who was supposed to love her.

ALSO READ | Murder accused requests courtroom to be cleared

He further told Thwala that he had no regard for the deceased’s life after he violently assaulted her and even extinguish his cigarette on the deceased’s lips before she died. He, therefore, found no exceptional circumstances justifying deviation from the prescribed minimum sentence of life.

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