$150 bail for Xmas Day murder suspect

Mashudu Netsianda Senior Court Reporter
A BULAWAYO man who allegedly fatally stabbed a rival suitor on Christmas Day during a fight over a girlfriend has been granted $150 bail pending trial. Lindani Caphu, 20, of Old Magwegwe suburb, last week filed a bail application at the High Court pending trial citing the State as the respondent. Bulawayo High Court judge Justice Nicholas Mathonsi on Friday granted Caphu $150 bail and ordered him to reside at his given address until the matter is finalised.

In his ruling, the judge ordered Caphu to surrender his passport and to report to Luveve Police Station twice a week and not to interfere with State witnesses as part of the bail conditions.

Caphu allegedly stabbed Limukani Ncube, 24, on both shoulders with a kitchen knife, leading to his death. In his application, through his lawyer Prince Butshe-Dube of Mcijo, Dube and Partners Legal Practitioners, Caphu pleaded not guilty to a charge of murder.

Butshe-Dube said if given bail his client would not abscond since he is waiting for his O-Level results. “The fact that the applicant has no formal employment is hardly a reason for denying someone bail. The applicant completed his O-Level studies last year and he is waiting for the results and he is also looking forward to proceeding to A-Level,” said Butshe-Dube.

Nonhlanhla Ndlovu, for the State, argued that if granted bail, Caphu was likely to abscond given the gravity of the crime.

“It’s humbly submitted that it can’t be doubted that the charge the applicant is facing is a very serious offence. Murder by its nature is a very serious crime for which upon conviction an accused can be sentenced to a lengthy prison term or life and therefore the applicant is likely to abscond if granted bail. As such applicant is not a suitable candidate for bail and the state prays that the application be dismissed,” said Ndlovu.

The court heard that on December, 25, 2015 shortly after 9PM in Cowdray Park suburb, Caphu and Ncube had a misunderstanding over a girlfriend. The dispute degenerated into a fistfight during which Caphu pulled out a kitchen knife and stabbed Ncube on both shoulders.

Ncube was taken to Empopini Police Base in a wheelbarrow, but died on the way due to excessive bleeding. The court heard Caphu left the knife at the scene and fled with a mob chasing after him. He was later rescued by a relative and whisked away in a South African registered vehicle. Caphu was later tracked down and arrested.

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