Mom pleased that Busi murder-accused is denied bail

Busisiwe Ngwadla's sister, Pumla, and mother Nonubele Mbolekwa, attend Ayanda Matika's bail application.
Busisiwe Ngwadla's sister, Pumla, and mother Nonubele Mbolekwa, attend Ayanda Matika's bail application.
Image: John Harvey

The contrasting reactions of murder accused Ayanda “Mpiriri” Matika and Nonubele Mbolekwa, the mother of slain Amalinda businesswoman Busisiwe Ngwadla, spoke volumes as the 50-year-old was denied bail on Monday.

Having brought a confident air to his previous appearance in the East London district court, where his bail application has been heard, Matika appeared nervous prior to magistrate Luyanda Gobingca delivering his ruling.

On several occasions he fixated on a spot on the ground, seemingly lost in his thoughts, while shaking his right leg.

As judgment was passed, he stared in front of him, before giving a brief wave to his family members in the gallery.

Mbolekwa, on the other hand, was beaming as she emerged from the courtroom following the judgment: “I am so happy. I want him to go to prison for the rest of his life.”

Surprisingly, the courtroom was devoid of the usual throng of supporters who have attended every session since the bail application began on July 22.

Ngwadla was stabbed 13 times at her Emerald Sky flat in Amalinda on February 26. In his testimony, Matika said he had “blacked out” during the stabbing. He then left the flat and took a flight to Cape Town. He admitted that he told his parents in Gugulethu to tell the police they did not know of his whereabouts, because he claimed to have been waiting for his attorney, Bongani Macingwane, before handing himself over to the authorities.

Gobingca said Matika’s argument that he was waiting for his lawyer did “not hold water”, and the fact that he had told his parents not to tell the police of his whereabouts meant that “it does not take a rocket scientist to understand his attempts to evade justice”.

He said the state’s case against Matika was “very strong”.

“His [Matika] evidence that he suffered a blackout does not make sense at all. Under cross-examination, he said he dispossessed the deceased of the knife and even suffered a cut on his hand, then he suffered a blackout, so he had a recollection of what was happening.”

One of the key pieces of evidence in the bail application was a voice note that Matika sent to his friend a day after the killing. This was circulated widely on social media.

Gobingca said in the voice note, Matika made no mention of a blackout, or having to dispossess Ngwadla of a knife.

He said petitions submitted to the court showed that the killing not only shocked people in SA, but people across the world, as some of the responses were from the UK and US.

Gobingca spoke to the issue of “exceptional circumstances” for bail, but the fact that Matika gave money to his 27-year-old son, his grandchildren, aged between six and seven, and his elderly parents did not constitute such circumstances.

His grandson and parents all received social grants from the government, he added.

Outside the courthouse, ANC Ward 16 representative Siyanda Moya, who has been supporting Ngwadla’s family, called the ruling a “victory”.

“This is round two which we’ve won. The first was his arrest. Now it’s on to round three and the trial. The justice system did not disappoint us,” said Moya.

“Busi’s mom told me she hasn’t been sleeping, but now she can finally get a good night’s sleep. We are so grateful for the support of the community, in Ward 16, in East London, in the country.”

A date for Matika’s trial is expected to be set this week.

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