Dewani Trial: Middleman takes the stand

Monde Mbolombo put former taxi driver Zola Tongo and hitman Mziwamadoda Qwabe in contact.

Shrien Dewani leaves the Western Cape High Court on 29 October 2014. Picture: Aletta Gardner/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - A former hotel receptionist, regarded as the middleman in the alleged plot to kill Swedish bride Anni Hindocha Dewani, has taken the stand in the Western Cape High Court.

He is the state's latest witness to testify against Anni's husband, Shrien Dewani, who is accused of hiring hitmen to kill his wife in Cape Town four years ago.

A taxi driver and two local hitmen have already been convicted and sentenced for their role in the killing.

Monde Mbolombo put taxi driver Zola Tongo and hitman Mziwamadoda Qwabe in contact.

But Dewani's defence has suggested his role in the conspiracy is far greater than that.

Mbolombo turned state witness in triggerman Xolile Mngeni's trial and was granted indemnity from prosecution.

But when he took the stand this morning, Judge Jeanette Traverso said she wasn't convinced the indemnity applied to this trial as well and expected counsel to brief her on the matter at a later stage.

Traverso warned Mbolombo to testify honestly and satisfactorily.


Earlier on, a third policeman testified that Dewani said his wife wanted to see the township nightlife before the couple was hijacked in Gugulethu.

He denies any involvement in the alleged staged hijacking in which she was shot and killed.

Captain Vinesh Lutchman said Dewani told him what had happened to him and his wife when they were allegedly hijacked.

Lutchman said Dewani told him his wife wanted to see the nightlife in the township but he didn't want to because he wasn't feeling well.

He said Dewani than explained that his wife insisted that she wanted to go.

The police captain, who was appointed as a family liaison officer, accompanied Dewani to the mortuary to view Anni's body.

But he said the following day, Dewani didn't want to accompany his father and father-in-law to the funeral parlour to perform a Hindu ritual before the body was repatriated, saying he needed to go shopping.