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The Arrest of Seven Suspects in the AKA Murder Case: A Break in the Investigation

Published March 01, 2024
4 months ago

In a significant development in the unsolved murder case of renowned South African rapper Kiernan ‘AKA’ Forbes and his friend, chef Tebello ‘Tibz’ Motsoane, seven men have been arrested and charged. These arrests end a year of speculation and perceived silence from law enforcement, providing the first significant breakthrough since the incident.

AKA and Tibz were tragically shot and killed on the bustling Florida Road in Durban on February 10, 2023, an event that shocked fans and the South African music industry at large. The investigation into the murders took a definitive turn this week, when police custody welcomed a businessman, a mining boss, four taxi bosses, and one unemployed individual in connection with the high-profile crime.

The suspects, Lindokuhle Thabani Mkhwanazi, Lindani Ndimande, Eddie Myeza, Mziwethemba Harvey Gwabeni, and Lindokuhle Ndimande, made their initial court appearance at the Durban Magistrate’s Court. The defendants were ordered by the magistrate to remove face coverings for the proceedings, signifying their formal presentation before the justice system.

Police have remained tight-lipped about the ongoing investigation, promoting whispers of a potential "cold case." However, the silence was strategically disrupted by KZN police commissioner Lieutenant General Nhlanhla Mkhwanazi, who detailed the sequence and nature of the arrests, signaling a steadfast progression in the investigation.

Rumors and industry insiders have theorized the motive behind AKA's murder to be a contract killing, allegedly costing an estimated R800,000, with each suspect purportedly receiving R133,000 for their role in the murder.

The coordinated apprehension of the suspects was executed by members of the KZN Provincial Organised Crime Unit, confirming the depth of organized crime involvement in the case. The arrest timeline commenced with Eddie Myeza, a 22-year-old unemployed resident of uMlazi, in April 2023. Other arrests followed, including prominent figures from the taxi industry, well-known for its competitiveness and, at times, violent clashes.

One of the accused, Mziwethemba Harvey Gwabeni, a businessman with mining interests, is alleged to be the coordinator of the assassination. He, unlike his co-accused, faces singular charges related to AKA's murder and has already voiced concerns over his treatment in custody through his lawyer, notably highlighting issues around basic human rights such as access to food and hygienic facilities.

While the legal process unfolds, a pressing issue remains with two additional suspects who have fled to Eswatini. Efforts to extradite them are underway as the South African legal system seeks to hold all individuals accountable for their alleged participation in the crime.

The case has gripped South African society, shedding light on the complexity and dangers of celebrity life and the shadowy underbelly of organized crime. As the accused are expected to return to court on March 6, the nation eagerly awaits further revelations and the pursuit of justice for AKA and Tibz.

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