Sacked employee and 'hitman' in court over 'disciplinary hearing murders'

10 November 2020 - 13:46
By Tania Broughton and Orrin Singh
A disgruntled fired employee, an alleged hitman and another co-accused appeared in court on Monday.
Image: 123RF/STOCKSTUDIO44 A disgruntled fired employee, an alleged hitman and another co-accused appeared in court on Monday.

A former employee of Pietermaritzburg-based aluminium supplier Hulamin, who was dismissed for being drunk on duty, has appeared in court facing charges of murder relating to the deaths of two witnesses at his disciplinary hearing.

Thondokulu Zungu appeared in the Pietermaritzburg magistrate’s court on his own on Monday, then separately with Mlungisi Ngwabe and then again separately with Nhlanganipho Gumede.

National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Natasha Kara confirmed they faced charges of murder, attempted murder, intimidation, malicious damage to property and arson. 

On Sunday the police said Zungu had been arrested together with an alleged hitman.

This followed the murder of two key witnesses, who testified against Zungu at an internal disciplinary hearing after he had arrived at work intoxicated.

All those who were part of the hearing, including witnesses, had subsequently been attacked in some way before and during the inquiry.

A security guard, 44, and his son, 24, were fatally shot at their home in Snathing Location in January.

Another security guard was shot and injured in Imbali in January 2019.

The home and car of the presiding officer was torched after he received death threats in July 2019.

The case was investigated by the provincial organised crime investigation unit, who arrested the accused over the weekend.

“The investigation is ongoing and more arrests cannot be ruled out,” said police spokesperson Col Thembeka Mbele.

All three matters were adjourned until November 24.

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