The Pietermaritzburg High Court has sentenced Nkosinathi Nkosi Zondi Mlambo (39) from Sweetwaters in Pietermaritzburg, to double life and 10 years imprisonment following his conviction for housebreaking with intent to murder, and the murders of his ex-girlfriend, Nomvula Ndlovu and her then boyfriend, Zethembe Makathini.

Prior to the incident, Mlambo and Ndlovu were in a love relationship and they had two children. At some point the relationship turned acrimonious and Ndlovu ended things with him. She then got into a relationship with Makathini.

On 25 December 2021, Mlambo visited his children at Ndlovu’s house in the Ezinkethini location of Pietermaritzburg. There were other people in the house, including Makathini. Mlambo demanded that Ndlovu take him back and she refused, thus angering him. He had two knives with him and threatened to stab Makathini for taking away the mother of his children. The situation was diffused and the knives were taken away from him. However, before leaving the house he demanded the return of his knives and went to a tavern where he consumed alcohol. Ndlovu went home with Makathini, who lived in the same area.

Later that evening Mlambo went to Makathini’s house where he broke down the door to gain entry. He found Makathini and Ndlovu asleep in bed and stabbed them to death. He stabbed Ndlovu 17 times and Makathini twice in the neck. Mlambo then fled the scene and was arrested three months later at a local tavern.

In the state’s case, State Advocate Mbongeni Chamane led the testimonies of two people to whom Mlambo had confessed to committing the murders. Chamane also handed in Victim Impact Statements (VIS) compiled by the sisters of Ndlovu and Makathini, and facilitated by Court Preparation Officer Mbalenhle Komane. In her statement, Ndlovu’s sister said she was grappling to come to terms with her sister’s death. They only had each other as they no longer had parents. She said that she had previously saved Ndlovu from Mlambo’s beatings, as this was not the first time that Mlambo had attacked her sister.

Makathini’s sister said that her brother was a talented builder and a kind person. She said that she is still in disbelief over his death and still experiences flashbacks of the gruesome scene.

Mlambo was sentenced to life imprisonment for each murder and 10 years imprisonment for housebreaking with intent to murder. He will serve an effective life imprisonment.

The NPA welcomes the sentence and we commend the work done by the prosecution and police, in securing this conviction. Sentences of this nature are indicative of our dedication to fighting crime and the scourge of gender-based violence

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