Investigating officer Alfred Barker, Phumza Kaka, Ncediwe Ngcawuzele, State prosecutor Christiaan De Jongh and Detective Warrant Officer Werner Bothma.
CAPE TOWN - The families of two slain Nyanga police officers on Thursday came face-to-face with the men who murdered them in June 2014, saying they had forgiven the men.
Western Cape police spokesperson Captain FC Van Wyk explained that ahead of the sentencing proceedings, the wife and sister of the two officers approached presiding Judge Boet Smit, requesting they be allowed to talk to the convicted murderers.
“I would like to do what my husband would have done, as he was a Christian and a God-fearing man,” said Phumza Kaka, wife of murdered Constable Monwabisi Kaka.
“I will definitely forgive you with all my heart, so I therefore forgive you.”
Kaka spoke to Melikhaya Molefe and Anele Liwani in the Western Cape High Court where the two men were sentenced to life imprisonment for the murders of Kaka and Sergeant Sibongile Ngcawuzele on June 30, 2014.
Kaka explained that the murder of her husband had had a devastating effect on their family.
She said, addressing Molefe and Liwani: “Let me tell you what you have done to me, my children, and my entire family. [You] have caused so much hurt, distress, and difficulties.”
Also addressing the murderers was Ngcawuzele’s sister Ncediwe Ngcawuzele.
“Ngcawuzele said her brother was the breadwinner at home for his eight children,” said Van Wyk.
“His 19-year-old daughter, she said, was struggling at school since the incident.”
Police welcomed the sentencing, with Acting Provincial Commissioner Major General Rene Fick commending the investigating officers.
“Criminals who viciously murder police officials do not go unpunished. The harsh convictions meted out to police murderers sends a message to the community that those who dare take the lives of police officials will face hefty sentences,” said Fick.
Fick added that police mourned the loss of Kaka, Ngcawuzele, and others killed by criminals but said they would not be deterred from fulfilling their duties.
“The motive behind the killing of police officials by the criminals is often to enable them to continue harassing society, and that will not be tolerated. We will not rest until those who take the lives of our colleagues and members of the public, are all behind bars.”
Fick also sent a clear warning to those within the police aiding criminals in their assault on cops.
“This message is also aimed internally at those corrupt police officials involved in or aiding others to kill police officials – you kill a police official, you kill the nation!”
Thando Mdokwana and Anele Thala, previously co-accused, were sentenced to five years each for the theft of a motor vehicle.