A trial date has been set in the murder case of Zolile Khumalo. The trial will be heard from 8 to 12 October in the Durban High Court. This, after the man who stands accused was expected to plead guilty on Wednesday.
The state intends to call 20 witnesses to testify against Thabani Mzolo (24).
Mzolo was arrested in May after allegedly shooting Khumalo multiple times in her room at an off-site residence, Lonsdale.
According to the indictment read out at The Durban Magistrate’s Court, Mzolo faces charges of murder, possession of unlicensed firearm, and possession of live ammunition.
Mzolo was expected to plead guilty following a statement made to the media by his attorney Charl Classeen in July. Classeen told the Mercury that his client had handed him written instructions to inform the public, especially the deceasedâ€™s family about his intention to plead guilty to provide them with closure. However, there was no mention in court of Mzoloâ€™s intention to plead.
â€œHe appreciates the pain and anguish they are going through and hopes they can now know the truth as opposed to waiting for what could be months before he is indicted and called upon to formally plead to the charge,â€ Claassen told the Mercury.Â
Mzolo abandoned bail at his court appearance last month and was remanded in custody.
At the court gallery were the deceasedâ€™s family who,made interjected as reaction as the state prosecutor Calvin Govender was reading out summary of facts the state will look into to prove Mzoloâ€™s guilt.
Khumalo family spokesperson Mabuyi Myeni said the family hopes Mzolo will finally accept that he committed the crime and plead guilty to the murder.
â€œWe are very touched, especially when the summary of facts were read out. We hope the justice will prevail and that he will finally accept that he killed her, not that it will bring her back but for closure,â€ she said.
Featured image by Lizeka Maduna