Duo plead not-guilty to former MP’s murder
Having initially indicated he would be pleading guilty, one of the men accused of killing Mochudi East MP, Isaac Davids, dropped a bombshell this week when he pleaded not guilty.
Appearing before Gaborone High Court on Wednesday, 36-year-old Mokgalemi Maleya insisted he was innocent of murder.
His co-accused, Zimbabwean national, Jabulani ‘Petros’ Dube, 34, also entered a not-guilty plea.
Addressing court in loud, confident tones, the two men proclaimed their innocence as David’s wife and children listened quietly on.
Explaining why the state failed to bring any witnesses to court, Prosecutor, Thato Dibeela, explained they had not had time to react to the suspects ‘change of heart’.
“We were only made aware a fortnight ago. Most of my witnesses stay about 200km away,” he said.
Dibeela revealed the state intends to call a total of 15 witnesses and will need roughly four days to convince the court.
Despite this, court set continuation of trial for 11 November with a stretched date of June 2021.
In an incident that made headline news, Dube and Maleya are said to have stabbed Davids to death in January 2018 following an altercation at a farm in Sorilatholo.
Davids, popularly known as ‘Fokon Bastard’, had employed the duo as herdboys.
It is alleged a scuffle broke out after Davids arrived at the farm and discovered the two men had gone drinking at a nearby shebeen.
The two had allegedly left with the former MP’s horses but without his permission.
The state witnesses are expected to tell court that Davids requested Dube, aka Petros, to return his horses back to the cattlepost.
In his police statement, an alleged eye-witness to the murder, Ramonti Segwati claimed, “In response Petros said, I quote: ‘Di laise mo koloing ya gago o tsamae ka tsone (load them in your vehicle and go with them). Mr. Isaac replied by saying “ke ne ke sa tlela dipitse (I did not come here for the horses).”
According to Segwati’s account, Dube then got angry and started to insult Davids.
“He angrily advanced to Mr. Isaac saying o mar* ke tlo go fagola ke go kgaola po (your testicles I am going to castrate you and cut off your penis).”
Segwati further claims Davids retaliated by hitting Dube, who then charged at the former MP with an Okapi knife.
Maleya is currently out on bail while Dube is remanded in custody.