'Assassination 'plot' case won't stand up in court'
THE National Prosecuting Authority has declined to pursue further a case in which a group of people allegedly tried to hire a hitman to kill a tow-truck businessman.
Morgan Matlala, husband of Afro-jazz singer Phinda Mtya, claims that five businessmen from Polokwane in Limpopo conspired to kill him two years ago.
He said despite the evidence incriminating them - including an audio and statement from a witness - the NPA said the case of intimidation that he had opened was not prosecutable.
NPA spokesman Mthunzi Mhaga said: "It should be noted that in a court of law a prosecutor is as good as his evidence because it's not about what you know, but what you can prove.
"The case docket has now been filed with the police as closed. On assessment of available evidence, prosecutors declined to prosecute because of a lack of sufficient evidence to sustain a conviction."
In a recorded audio that Sowetan heard, a man is having a conversation with a police officer, who turned out to be Matlala's friend.
He said that his boss (not identified by name) was looking for a hitman to assassinate Matlala for a reward of R100,000.
"My boss wants to see the gun first and he will give you R50,000. You will get the rest (R50,000) when you complete the job. It is easy to kill him because he is all over the place.
"We would create an accident scene just to fool him, so that he can be shot."
The police officer took the audio to Matlala, who opened a case of intimidation at the Polokwane police station.
Matlala said: "The police took the phone and it only came back this year when they told me that the prosecutor said there was not enough evidence to pursue the matter".
Polokwane police spokesman Colonel Moatshe Ngoepe confirmed that the case could not stand in court.
It is alleged that the "plot" was over business interests in the area.
Matlala said he has lived in fear since the incident.