In a significant turn of events in the ongoing trial surrounding the 2014 murder of South African football icon Senzo Meyiwa, gospel singer Kelly Khumalo has been accused of orchestrating the assassination of her then-partner. This shocking allegation was presented in the Gauteng High Court this week.
The Tragic Incident and Subsequent Investigations
Senzo Meyiwa, a celebrated former captain of South Africa’s national football team and a goalkeeper for Orlando Pirates, was fatally shot in 2014 during an alleged robbery at Ms. Khumalo’s home. Meyiwa’s death, which occurred as he reportedly attempted to shield Ms. Khumalo from armed intruders, has since been a subject of intense national interest.
In 2020, a breakthrough in the case led to the arrest of five individuals. However, the narrative took a dramatic turn when Bongani Gininda, the lead investigator in the case, claimed in court that Kelly Khumalo was the mastermind behind what he described as “a contractual assassination or hit”.
Kelly Khumalo’s Response
Responding to these allegations, Ms. Khumalo’s spokesperson expressed confidence in the legal proceedings.
“We trust in the legal process,” the spokesperson stated to the BBC, adding that while Ms. Khumalo is not in a position to comment directly, her legal team is actively working on the matter.
Connecting Dots: Evidence and Statements
The suspicion around Ms. Khumalo initially surfaced following the leakage of police documents in 2020, coinciding with the arrest of the suspects. At that time, her attorney asserted that the gospel singer had no knowledge of the arrested individuals.
In a recent court session, Mr. Gininda testified that one of the apprehended suspects confessed to being instructed by Ms. Khumalo to execute Mr. Meyiwa. He further mentioned that there were cellular phone linkages tying Ms. Khumalo to the suspects.
Colonel Lambertus Steyn from the National Cold Case Investigation Unit revealed last year that Ms. Khumalo had been in contact with one of the accused before the murder. Additionally, a photograph of money in a transparent bag, found on both Ms. Khumalo’s and a suspect’s phone, added to the intrigue.
Court Proceedings and Challenges
The court is currently deliberating on the admissibility of the confession statements. Two suspects have claimed that their confessions were coerced.
Personal Life and Conflicts
Kelly Khumalo and Senzo Meyiwa shared a child together. According to Mr. Gininda, the relationship between the pair had soured significantly. He cited communication records from early 2013, allegedly showing Ms. Khumalo expressing a desire to end her association with Mr. Meyiwa.
As this high-profile case unfolds, the nation watches with bated breath, awaiting further developments and a possible resolution to a saga that has captivated and saddened many.