A Limpopo man who stabbed his wife 17 times was sentenced to life in prison in the Limpopo High Court last Thursday, after he was convicted of her murder.
He claimed her wounds were self-inflicted.

Prince Khumalo, 40, murdered his 31-year-old wife Lindiwe Sibiya at their Lephalale home in Limpopo on April 27, 2018.

According to the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), Khumalo had an argument with his wife in the presence of their two young children while they were in a vehicle. The argument continued when they got home.

“They further armed themselves with knives in their kitchen but stopped the fight when they realised that their seven-year-old son was watching,” NPA spokesperson Mashudu Malabi-Dzhangi said in a statement.

“In the middle of the night, the child woke up as the couple started shouting at each other, with the accused threatening the deceased with a knife.”

One of the children, who testified in camera, said he could hear a heated exchange between his mother and father, followed by his mother screaming and then sudden silence.

“He further alluded that he saw his father with blood, washing a knife in the bathroom and put[ting] the knife in his car. Later, he took him with his little brother to an unknown female where he left them.”

Khumalo, who pleaded not guilty, claimed that Sibiya’s injuries were self-inflicted and that he locked her in the house and drove to Johannesburg where he dropped off his children, placing them in the care of a friend.

“He drove back to Lephalale where he pretended to have ‘discovered’ his wife’s death. When the police noticed that there were no signs of a break-in at the house, he became the police’s prime suspect as he was the only one with the keys to their house,” Malabi-Dzhangi said.

State advocate Trott Mphahlele argued that the attack was vicious, submitting that the post-mortem revealed 17 stab wounds and that a sharp object penetrated her neck and chest.

“Advocate Mphahlele added that the actions of the accused are callous, as he shows no regard for the feelings of the two children in finding out that he killed their mother. It also fits with his selfish conduct throughout the events.”

In pre-sentencing proceedings, Khumalo maintained his innocence.

“The State concluded during arguments that the actions of the accused immediately after the murder were calculated, cold-blooded and demonstrated a lack of remorse. He further asked the court to impose life imprisonment.”

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ZIMENE MUMAKONDA

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