Dewani: Mbolombo was to ‘control’ kill plan

Cape Town – Hotel receptionist Monde Mbolombo decided to co-ordinate the plan to kill honeymooner Anni Hindochi despite not having many details, the Western Cape High Court heard on Friday.The State’s 14th witness said during cross-examination that despite not being told what his role would be, he took up the “burden” of making sure things went according to plan.He had intended to attend a planning meeting with his accomplices on 13 November 2010, because he was “curious” about the details, but had to work instead.In phone calls to his accomplices Zola Tongo and Mziwamadoda Qwabe after the meeting, they did not tell him how Anni was to be killed or the time she and her husband Shrien would be hijacked.

He told Francois van Zyl, for Dewani, that all he knew was that Tongo was going to be let out of his car and the couple driven to an unknown location in Khayelitsha.

Van Zyl replied that it was strange he should know so little and yet be responsible for executing the plan.

“Let me just say then I was not in charge. It [this role] didn’t come from anyone. It is just something that came from me and I wanted to do it from my side,” Mbolombo told the court.

Dewani is on trial for allegedly plotting with Tongo and others to kill Anni while they were on honeymoon in Cape Town in November 2010.

He has pleaded not guilty to charges including kidnapping, murder, and defeating the ends of justice.

He claims the couple was hijacked while Tongo was driving them through Gugulethu in his minibus on Saturday, 13 November.

He was released unharmed, but Anni was driven away. She was found shot dead in the abandoned minibus in Khayelitsha the next morning.

Staged hijacking

The State alleges Dewani paid R15 000 to have the hijacking staged. He maintains Tongo helped him organise a surprise helicopter trip for Anni for R15 000.

Tongo is serving an 18-year jail term and Qwabe a 25-year jail term.

Xolile Mngeni was serving life in jail for firing the shot that killed Anni, but died in prison from a brain tumour on 18 October.

Mbolombo was warned at the beginning of his testimony that the court had yet to decide whether he would be granted immunity from prosecution on five criminal charges.

He told the court this week that he had lied in his previous statements to police and while testifying in Mngeni’s trial.

His testimony in Dewani’s trial was meant to be the truth and to “put everything on the table” about his involvement.

Van Zyl said on Friday that Mbolombo had said something almost identical during Mngeni’s trial, even using the same phrase.

He replied that this may be so, but he was now telling the court what really happened.

– SAPA

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