South Africa’s Police Minister Bheki Cele is unsure about the whereabouts of the docket in the Senzo Meyiwa murder case, saying he thought it may be with the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA).
NPA spokesperson Phindi Mjonondwane, however, told City Press that the docket was currently with the office of the national police commissioner.
The Bafana Bafana goalkeeper was killed during a robbery five years ago at his girlfriend Kelly Khumalo’s home. Five others were present at the time.
On Tuesday, it was announced that the head of AfriForum’s private prosecution unit, advocate Gerrie Nel, would be representing the Meyiwa family in an investigation into his death.
Feeling that no progress was being made by the NPA after the police investigated the case, Meyiwa’s family turned to the lobby group last month to take the prosecution forward.
“It is important that AfriForum gets involved in cases such as these – it’s in the interest of the whole country,” CEO Kallie Kriel said.
“AfriForum serves as a counterweight to the failure of the state and, as a civil rights watchdog, it is our duty to prevent the criminal justice system from collapsing,” he added.
Speaking to a large contingent of journalists outside the 9th Popcru Congress at the Durban International Convention Centre on Wednesday, Cele said that, while it had taken too long for the murder to go unsolved, he was satisfied with the work of the police.
“AfriForum said they were here to embarrass the justice system, not solve the case. To me that was a telling statement. We are not here to embarrass anyone. We are here to solve the matter, and I want to insist the matter will be solved.
“It’s been a long time. By now we should have found the results. I am on a year on the matter. I find it satisfying to me that we are going somewhere.
“The family said it is very well satisfied with the work of the police,” he claimed.
Cele was insistent that police were doing all that they could, despite no one being held to account nearly six years after Meyiwa was shot dead in 2014.
In a statement last month, the NPA said it had spoken to the family.
“As part of promoting openness to victims of crime and their families, and after several enquiries about the unsolved murder, the DPP met with the brother of the slain soccer player to explain why prosecution cannot proceed at this stage,” Mjonondwane said.
“The NPA is not prepared to enrol cases with insufficient evidence, lest we be guilty of malicious prosecution and raising false hope to the family of the late Senzo Meyiwa.
“The investigations in this matter are at a sensitive stage. The NPA continues to play a guiding role and once the investigations are concluded and we are satisfied that the matter is court ready, we will not hesitate to bring the perpetrators to book,” Mjonondwane said.
City Press reported at the weekend that it had now emerged that the police will refocus their investigations on those who were in the house at the time of the shooting.
The publication said it had a recording from a senior NPA executive who had told a Meyiwa family member that those inside the house had lied in their statements.