The man implicated in the alleged hijacking which led to the fatal car crash involving Generations: The Legacy actor Rapulana Seiphemo, lied about his whereabouts on the day of the incident.
Nathi Msiza, 26, of Mamelodi, first said he was in Laudium on Valentine’s Day when the incident occurred, only for the investigating officer to establish he was picked up by an ambulance from the scene.
Msiza was applying for bail in the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court on Monday. His alleged accomplice, 34-year-old Tebogo Makunyane, died in the accident with two other people who were also in the other car. Seiphemo spent several days in intensive care in hospital.
Msiza is also accused of defeating the ends of justice after providing a false statement on his whereabouts on the day of the incident.
On Monday in court, Constable Piet Shabalala read into the record a statement made by Seiphemo. He told the court that at the time of the incident, the popular actor who plays Tau Mogale in the SABC1 daily soapie, was driving in Centurion when he stopped at an intersection. “Before he could on-ramp on to the N1, the victim (Seiphemo) alleged that two African males approached his vehicle.
“One of them smashed the window of his vehicle and they both jumped in. Msiza, who was armed, sat in the back seat of the Audi A4; Makunyane occupied the front seat.
“They instructed him to drive and he drove on to the N1 and off-ramped on to the N14. Because he was scared, the victim increased his speed.
“Both men became nervous and told him to slow down, and informed him it was a hijacking. He didn’t slow down and that was when Msiza jumped out of the vehicle,” Shabalala told the court.
Msiza walked into court on crutches and appeared to have sustained serious injuries. A part his right middle finger had been severed.
The constable said Makunyane told Seiphemo that he would not jump out of the car. Wrestling followed as the two fought for control of the steering wheel. At that stage the A4 collided with another car.
Msiza was picked up by an ambulance and taken to Kalafong Hospital in Atteridgeville.
Based on the allegations made by Seiphemo, the constable testified, he went to interview Msiza on February 18, four days after the accident.
“The first thing he said was that he was bumped by a vehicle in Laudium while crossing the road. He said he was on his way back from visiting his cousin in Danville,” he said.
Shabalala said he contacted paramedics who treated Msiza at the scene and they told him a different story. “I got in touch with the driver of the ambulance, and he said they found Msiza at the crime scene on February 14. I went to arrest him for defeating the ends of justice and attempted hijacking.”
Shabalala told prosecutor Georgina Rily he opposed the bail application. “He poses a flight risk because he attempted to escape from hospital. Another patient told me that the suspect contacted an associate and asked him to bring him clothes because he wanted to run away as the police seemed to know about the story.”
The bail application continues on Tuesday.