Court amazed by KZN hitman Bhani's precision

Mxoleleni Bhani was the first man to be arrested and successfully prosecuted for the murders at Glebelands Hostel in Umlazi, Durban. Witnesses refuse to testify.
Mxoleleni Bhani was the first man to be arrested and successfully prosecuted for the murders at Glebelands Hostel in Umlazi, Durban. Witnesses refuse to testify.
Image: THULI DLAMINI

One of KwaZulu-Natal hitmen was asked to demonstrate to court on Friday how he managed to shoot his target despite the deceased being flanked by other people.

Mxoleleni Bhani, 30, and his co-accused Mbeko Duma, 29, were on Friday sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder and a further 20 years for being in the possession of various dangerous weapons by the Durban High Court.

During sentencing procedures, Judge Kate Pillay requested Bhani to show to the court how he was spot-on and did not miss his target in the murder he had committed.

"Mr Bhani, please show us as to how you were precise to your target. You opened fire in a public space and the victim was surrounded by other people but nobody else was
injured. How [did] you manage to do it?" Pillay asked.

Bhani stood up, smiled, then looked down and never uttered a word.

The pair ambushed and killed Lamontville Taxi Association boss Vela Ndebele at the local community hall where a taxi association meeting was to be held in June 2015.

Bhani from Harding, KwaZulu-Natal south coast, is also serving a life sentence for killing Sipho Ndovela, a key witness in the Glebelands Hostel murders.

Like Ndebele, Ndovela was also surrounded by other people, including police officers, when a bullet hit him.

Ndovela was killed inside Umlazi Magistrate's Court where he had been testifying and had implicated high-profile people in the assassinations, including politicians.

Nobody else was injured in the attack. Bhani was the first man to be arrested and
successfully prosecuted for the murders at Glebelands Hostel.

However, Pillay had bemoaned the unavailability of witnesses in cases involving hitmen.

"The only eye witness, Sibusiso Dube, was reluctant to testify.

"And I do not blame him because he seemed scared and traumatised by the incident."

Dube and other association members were standing next to the deceased when he was killed.

State prosecutor Nadira Moosa said both Duma and Bhani should not be afforded parole because they had no prospects of rehabilitation.

"The deceased had done nothing wrong to them. They also refused to take this honourable court to their confidence by denying to have committed the crime," said Moosa.

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