Accused's money offer for car guard death 'disgusting'

Vusi Mgiqwa died after being punched.
Vusi Mgiqwa died after being punched.

One of the key witnesses in the murder of  car guard, Vusi Mgiqwa  has described a compensation offer made to the deceased’s family by his alleged killer as “disgusting”.

Ryan Hynes who witnessed Mgiqwa being punched by Lukas Van der Merwe in October last year said the  offer R50 000 to the family by the accused was disturbing.

“How can you put R50 000 on someone’s life? Are you telling me that someone’s life is worth R50 000. It is gusting. I was shocked when I read the story,” Hynes told Sowetan on Tuesday.

Hynes played a key role in providing information to the police which led to Van der Merwe’s arrest within three days of the crime.

On Monday, South Africans opened their hearts and pockets to Mgiqwa’s family by donating more than R50,000 to counter an offer made by Van der Merwe’s lawyers for a possible lenient sentence.

The pledges came after Gauteng education MEC Panyaza Lesufi vowed to give the family the R50,000.

In a post on Twitter tagging Sowetan's article about Mgiqwa's family accepting the offer, Lesufi wrote: "This one, allegedly killed a car guard and then offers R50k to the family so that the court can be lenient. I've decided together with my friends to donate R50k to the family so that they can return the 'blood money' to the alleged killer."

Lesufi also visited Mgiqwa’s home in Tsakane the same day where he met the deceased’s sister Jabulile.

Mgiqwa died in hospital last year from head injuries he suffered after Van der Merwe allegedly punched him during an altercation over parking outside a restaurant in Selcourt, Springs.

Mgiqwa fell on his head and was left unconscious. He was the breadwinner for his family.

Hynes helped to source funding for Mgiqwa’s burial.

Van der Merwe is out on bail of R6 500 and is expected back in court at the end of the month.

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