Trial of Daveyton nanny accused of killing toddler starts in February

10 December 2019 - 17:20
By Naledi Shange
The trial of Mannana Celinah Tsabane will begin in February at the Benoni magistrates court.
Image: Thulani Mbele The trial of Mannana Celinah Tsabane will begin in February at the Benoni magistrates court.

The Daveyton couple whose toddler was murdered, allegedly by his nanny, will need to wait until next year to find out what led to the crime.

The nanny, Mannana Tsabane from Lesotho, appeared in in the Benoni magistrate’s court on Tuesday. The matter was postponed to February 5 next year, as some parts of the police investigation are yet to be concluded.

Tsabane, aged 39, will remain behind bars after she chose to abandon her bail bid last month. She did so in a full courtroom, where community members and relatives of the slain 19-month-old toddler, Langelihle "Langa" Mnguni, called for her release - saying they wanted to “deal with her” themselves.

During those court proceedings, the prosecution revealed that it was still waiting for the contents of Tsabane’s cellphone. Prosecutor Pheello Maleleka told the court at the time that Tsabane’s cellphone was yet to be processed by forensics and was believed to contain crucial information that would help their case.

Maleleka said they were also waiting for Langa’s postmortem report, as well as photos taken at the scene.

On October 28, Tsabane, who had taken care of Langa since he was two months old, told the family that she had been attacked by intruders.

She was found by the boy's mother and grandmother when they returned from work that day. Tsabane told them that attackers had entered the house and poisoned her and Langelihle before taking off with him. She claimed that she had been unable to make contact with the toddler’s mother or call neighbours for help. 

The little boy, however, was later found dead in the family’s storeroom while medics were attending to Tsabane.

Days before his funeral, Langelihle's family told TimesLIVE that the toddler had been strangled and suffocated. He had also suffered a neck fracture.

While in her hospital bed, Tsabane was charged with murder and defeating the ends of justice.

Langelihle’s family said they did not believe Tsabane’s version of events and believed she had carried out the murder herself.