South Africa News

Businessman dies of Covid-19 in Johannesburg prison

A Soweto businessman who allegedly shot and killed his wife at their home has died in custody.

Sibusiso Abednego Nyembe, 52, died at the Johannesburg Correctional Centre after contracting Covid-19. Nyembe allegedly shot and killed his wife, Bangisile Nyembe, in their Mofolo home in October 2018. He handed himself over to police on the same day.

Bangisile’s son, Melusi Ndlovu, said there was a sense of closure finding out of the death of his mother’s hiusband.

“It was a sudden thing and we had to move on from it because it meant that he was no longer around and that meant there is some form of closure that comes with it. It meant to us that that chapter came to an end,” Ndlovu said. He is Bangisile’s son from a previous relationship.

The Nyembe couple had two children together, with the younger witnessing the shooting of his mother. Ndlovu said his younger brother is doing well.

“He was young at the time and he underwent therapy and seems to have forgotten [about it]. This could be a coping mechanism, but he is OK now after the ordeal.”

Sizakele Nathi, Nyembe’s sister, confirmed to Sowetan that her brother died while in custody but did not wish to comment further on the matter.

Nyembe’s lawyer William Sekgatja confirmed the businessman died after contracting Covid-19 while in the awaiting-trial section of the Johannesburg Correctional Centre, popularly known as Sun City.

“It was sudden because it was Covid,” Sekgatja said.

In his affidavit that was read out in the Protea magistrate’s court in October 2018, Nyembe alleged that while preparing for work on the day of the murder, he and his wife had a heated argument.

Sergeant Tsakane Sithole testified that witnesses said that Nyembe entered the house in the morning and allegedly shot Bangisile before he left. Sithole further testified that the deceased had applied for a protection order against Nyembe on August 29, which prevented him from entering their home while she was asleep.

“The applicant [Nyembe] was seen by a community member entering the premises where the murder occurred. He allegedly entered the house, then returned to his car before going back into the house. The witness said he saw Nyembe exiting the house and driving off in his car,” she said.

-Sowetan

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