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Sunday, 31 March 2024 22:54

Gcaba family releases a statement on the ongoing AKA & Tibs murder case.

By Lehlohonolo Lehana.

The Gcaba family has released a statement following prosecutors linking prominent businessman Sydney Mfundo Gcaba to be the alleged perpetrator, in the assassination of well-known musician Kiernan "AKA" Forbes and his friend Tebello "Tibz" Motsoane.

On February 10, 2023, outside a restaurant in Durban, on the east coast of South Africa, AKA and Tibz were shot and killed. 

Citing a sworn statement by investigating officer Kumarasan Pillay, state prosecutor Elvis Gcweka told Durban Magistrate's Court that Bright Circle, a company owned by Gcaba allegedly paid over R800,000 to the bank account of Mziwethemba Harvey Gwabeni, one of the suspects, a day after AKA and Motsoane were murdered.

Gwabeni and his co-accused Lindokuhle Thabani Mkhwanazi, 30, Lindani Zenzele Ndimande, 35, Siyanda Eddie Myeza, 21, and Lindokuhle Lindo Ndimande, 29, face 12 charges.

These include two murders, conspiracy to commit murder, unlawful possession of firearms and ammunition, five attempted murders, and money laundering. All are applying for bail.

In the statement, Gcaba's family said they acknowledged the gravity of the situation at hand and the widespread interest it has garnered. However, they wish to express their unwavering faith in the South African judiciary and affirm their commitment to fully cooperate.

The family said in light of recent allegations, they wished to clarify things.

Mfundo is an adult and is a successful businessman in various sectors including coal mining and the taxi industry. It is important to note that financial transactions between him and Gwabeni were purely for business purposes. These numerous transactions over a long period of time can be verified through bank records and were neither unique nor isolated," the statement read.

The family said they were also concerned police have not yet approached Gcaba to share his side of the story and urged this opportunity be extended to him at the earliest convenience.

"It is crucial to understand that Mfundo assured the family that he has no connections to any illegal activities, nor does he have any motive to engage in such. His business dealings are legitimate and transparent, having nothing to hide from anyone, least of all our law enforcement," the family said.

They also extended their condolences to the families of AKA and Tibz.

The Gcaba family further requested their privacy to be respected during this period and said they would provide updates as more information becomes available and as appropriate.

Brothers, Siyabonga and Malusi Ndimande, were arrested in Eswatini last month and their matter is expected back in court on April 9. They are related to Lindani Zenzele Ndimande and Lindokuhle Lindo Ndimande.

Gcaba is a Durban businessman from a powerful business family. He started his Umhlanga-based Bright Circle in 2017 and he also owns several other companies that are in agriculture and logistics.

He is one of the many Gcaba brothers who run a taxi empire started by Simon – another brother – in the 1970s in KwaZulu-Natal. They operate an interprovincial and domestic fleet, with more than 500 minibus taxis and busses. When Simon was murdered in 1999, the brothers took over the business, increasing wealth and fame as KawaZulu-Natal’s taxi royalty.

Gcaba and his brothers are nephews of former South African president Jacob Zuma and the family comes from the rural region of Nkandla where Zuma was born.

The Gcaba brothers are no strangers to legal battles and controversies. In 2015, Gcaba was arrested and tried for a shooting incident that resulted in multiple deaths amidst a dispute over taxi routes between Durban and the KwaZulu-Natal South Coast.