Bozwana murder: Nightclub owner in court

2016-01-13 15:00

The owner of a well-known Pretoria nightclub is the alleged “mastermind” who is believed to have spearheaded the hit on construction and property mogul Wandile Bozwana. 

An ally of the deceased said the man suspected to have organised his killing was not a stranger to him. One source said Bozwana had often visited his club in Sunnyside. 

The same source said the Hawks were also looking for another businessman who was also known to Bozwana and had “also shared a table with him”. 

Meanwhile, the court today ordered that the name and pictures of the 29-year-old suspect not be published “for his own safety”. 

Wearing a red top that had “Ferrari” on the back, the dark-complexioned and slim-built man who wore black-framed spectacles appeared relaxed but tired as he confirmed to the court that he was not going to apply for bail. 

He first appeared in the same court on charges of house robbery. This case was postponed before charges for Bozwana murder and the attempted murder of his companion were placed on his head. 

The suspect had been wanted by the police for house robbery cases when he handed himself over and was arrested last week. He was soon linked to the murder of Bozwana, who died after he was sprayed with a shower of bullets in what is believed to have been a hit in October 2 last year. 

The youthful businessman has now been added to other two suspects believed to be the men who were arrested late last year for Bozwana’s murder. The court also ruled against the naming of the two suspects, who made their second appearance at a prison court after concerns for their safety were raised. 

Bozwana’s case was classified as high profile and was handed over to the Hawks elite police unit to investigate. 

It was reported that Bozwana was followed from Sandton. He was a passenger in a yellow Renault Clio, which was driven by an employee, Mpho Baloyi. 

They were attacked after a BMW M3 pulled up next to the Renault at a traffic light at the Garsfontein offramp on the N1. Bozwana was hit by at least nine bullets and died later at Unitas Hospital. Baloyi survived with two bullet wounds. 

Originally from Kuruman in the Northern Cape, Bozwana – who was a former captain of the Bophuthatswana homeland police service – turned to business in the early 2000s. 

He started out in Mahikeng in the North West where he lived and started building his empire, which included a big property portfolio from office complexes to residential estates. Bozwana also largely benefited from government tenders. 

At the time of his death he was at loggerheads with the North West government over debts owed to him. There were also a number of litigation issues involving awarded tenders that he was challenging. A leader of the North West Business Forum, Bozwana spoke openly against Premier Supra Mahumapelo’s administration and accused him of favouritism in the awarding of tenders. 

Meanwhile, Benedict Bozwana, the murdered businessman’s brother, said his family was happy with the progress made in terms on the recent arrest. 

“We had a chat with the state and were assured that no foul play would be allowed in this case and so our fears have been allayed. The three men will be appearing again in the next month and we’re hoping an arrest or two would have been made by then,” he said. 

The Hawks spokesperson, Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi, said their investigation continued but could not deny or confirm if they were hot on heels of any known suspect.

July 14 2019