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Dewani trial: Qwabe to come under intense cross-examination

The unemployed tour guide was sentenced to 25 years in jail for his role in the murder.

Honeymoon murder accused Shrien Dewani sits in the dock in the Western Cape High Court ahead of his murder trial on 6 October 2014. Picture: Aletta Gardner/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - A convicted killer turned state witness will come under intense cross-examination this morning when the Shrien Dewani's murder trial resumes in the Western Cape High Court.

Mziwamadoda Qwabe has been testifying against the British businessman who's accused of ordering a hit on his wife Anni during their honeymoon in Cape Town in 2010.

The trial started on Monday, with the Briton pleading not guilty to the five criminal charges against him.

Dewani's version of what happened in the days leading up to his wife's murder were detailed in a 37-page plea explanation on Monday.

Qwabe claims he was one of the three men involved in a staged hijacking in which Anni was killed.

But Dewani denies any involvement in the murder.

Qwabe is a key witness in the state's case against Dewani.

An unemployed tour guide, he was sentenced to 25 years in jail for his role in the murder.

Yesterday, he told the court he and his two accomplices staged the hijacking in which Anni was killed in exchange for R15,000.

Qwabe said his accomplice Xolile Mngeni shot the young woman while he was driving the hijacked car.

During cross-examination, defence counsel Francois van Zyl asked Qwabe why he waited almost two years before entering into a plea bargain with the state.

He also got Qwabe to admit that he lied under oath in a previous court hearing when he said he had an alibi on the night of the murder.

Meanwhile, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) says it's satisfied the trial is moving swiftly with no major difficulties at this stage.

The NPA's Eric Ntabazalila said, "We are satisfied with what happened and we hope there won't be any disruptions until 12 December."

GAY WEBSITE VISITS

According to a document handed over to the court this week, Dewani logged onto Gaydar, while waiting for a connecting flight to Cape Town at OR Tambo International Airport while he was with Anni.

He was also active on the gay dating website a few days after his wife was murdered.

These details are contained in a list of Dewani's admissions to the court.

Dewani has acknowledged he registered as a member on Gaydar using the profile name AsianSubGuy.

However, he deactivated the account on 21 November 2010, a little over a week later.

The following day, Dewani was questioned by members of his wife's family about what happened on the night she had been killed.

Part of that conversation was recorded by Anni's cousin and forms part of evidence in the case against him.

The witness list has not been released to the public.

Dewani was extradited from Britain in April after losing a three-year battle to avoid trial in South Africa.

Click here for Dewani's full plea explanation.

Click here for the Dewani trial live blog.