GQEBERHA – Justice was eventually served nearly six years after the killing of a 78 year old Gqeberha grandmother at her home in Needham Street in Kunene Park on 20 August 2015.

During the morning on the mentioned date, the domestic worker (37) was overpowered by three men, one of which she recognised, taken inside the house and her hands bound. Denise Webber, who lives in the granny flat on the premises was strangled to death. Both, the main house and the flat were ransacked and household items and jewellery were taken. Fikile Mengo (25) worked as an additional assistant to the domestic worker who was pregnant at the time. The accused left with stolen property in a hired Toyota Atios. When Mengo’s friends (the co-accused) heard that Mengo was working at the house, they conspired to rob the owners. After the murder and robbery, Mengo and his bag were missing.

After the murder and robbery, Mengo was on the run and due to the persistence of the investigating officers, D/Sergeants Dudley Ferreira and Aldre Koen of SAPS Kabega Park , Mengo’s grandmother brought him to the police station on 28 August 2015. The remaining three accused, Mkhuseli Ngqanda(34), Sinethemba Nenembe(33) and Thanduxolo Vumazonke(29) were arrested days later. They all remained in custody until the finalisation of the case. Most of the stolen property were recovered in the accused homes in New Brighton and Kwazakele. Three of the four accused are currently serving sentences for previous crimes. Nenembe is also serving a life sentence for the murder of school teacher, Jayde Panayiotou committed in April 2015.

On Wednesday, 28 April 2021, the four accused were sentenced in the Gqeberha High court as follows :

Fikile Mengo – Murder and aggravated robbery – effective 25 years in prison

Mkuseli Ngqanda – murder –life imprisonment and aggravated robbery 15 years. The aggravated robbery sentence will run concurrent with the life sentence.

Thanduxolo Vumazonke – murder and aggravated robbery – effective 25 years in prison

Sinethemba Nenembe – murder – life imprisonment and aggravated robbery – 15 years The aggravated robbery sentence will run concurrent with the life sentence.

Provincial Commissioner, Lt Gen Liziwe Ntshinga welcomed the sentencing of the four accused and stated that justice has been served.‘ It is clear that these criminals are not remorseful for their crimes, as all but one, are already serving sentences for other crimes. Although this case has taken almost 6 years to finalise, the families can now find closure knowing that justice was meted out to those who had mercilessly murdered their elderly mother and grandmother. Their heinous deeds were intentional and we commend the prosecuting authority for ensuring that they are removed from society for a very long time,’ added Lt Gen Ntshinga.

Source: South African Police Service

News Reporter