A High Court in Johannesburg, South Africa’s largest city, has sentenced Madiba Dumisani Mkhwanazi, the killer of University of Johannesburg (UJ) student Palesa Madiba to 31 years behind bars.
Mkhwanazi was, on Friday, found guilty of killing Madiba by Judge Prince Manyathi of the South Gauteng High Court.
Madiba went missing in 2013 after visiting her friend, Matshidiso – who is Mkhwanazi’s niece. Her body was found two years later in a shallow grave at a property where Mkhwanazi lived in Phiri.
Matshidiso had left Madiba behind as she left for work. Madiba was to leave later, to attend classes at UJ’s Kingsway Campus. However, she never made it to class nor left the Mkhwanazi residence.
Mkhwanazi was found guilty of her murder last year, seven years after Madiba was last seen at her friend’s home in Phiri, Soweto.
He has been sentenced to 20 years for Madiba’s murder. He has also been handed 3 years for theft, 8 years for defeating the ends of justice, 10 years for possession of unlicensed firearm and 2 years for possession of ammunition. He will serve an effective 31 years in prison.
His family had earlier obtained a protection order against Madiba’s family to stop them from searching the premises of their home in an attempt to locate her body.