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Friends lift lid on Fritz Joubert’s mental health spiral that ended in Anele Hoyana’s murder

2019-12-11 00:06

William Frederik Joubert, the white businessman who killed a black sangoma, Anele Hoyana last week, had been mentally unstable for a while.

Popularly known as Fritz Joubert, he was allegedly violent, drank excessively and might have been taking drugs.

Joubert (44), had once “physically harassed” his ex-wife’s boyfriend, resulting in a restraining order against him.

He was once admitted at Bloemcare Psychiatric Hospital for observation when he tried to get access to his children who lived with his ex-wife.

Hoyana (40), was bludgeoned to death by Joubert at his smallholding Brakfontein home in Tuba village in Kwelera, East London.

The incident, which was filmed, shocked the nation and sparked a racism debate.

But those who knew the pair believe it was not racially motivated but was the result of Joubert’s unstable mind.

The two, who were neighbours, had been living at Joubert’s house for more than two months.

The place where Hoyana lost his life, on the wooden floor at the veranda of the grass thatched house, still had visible blood marks this week.

Joubert was later killed by the police in self defence.

When City Press visited the house last week men were changing the locks after being requested to do so by Joubert’s family.

READ: Chilling account of how Anele Hoyana was killed

This was after the EFF in the Buffalo City Metro “expropriated” the house in protest of what they believed was a racist killing.

The words: “Welcome to Fabulous VEGAS #Transky” greet you as you enter the property.

The brown brick house is thatched with grass. It looks dilapidated.

Documents obtained by City Press from a close associate of Joubert, who would have turned 45 on December 5, give a glimpse into the dark and troubled life of the man who was feared by many in his community.

In one document, a signed affidavit by Joubert’s ex-wife Ilse Joubert dated, February 28 this year, she wrote: “I am the ex-wife of William Frederik Joubert. I can confirm that as a result of our marriage that broke up, he was aggressive to my new boyfriend and therefore we applied for a restriction order against him, because he physically harassed my boyfriend.”

One of Joubert’s white friends, who asked not to be named for fear of being victimised, said what pushed Joubert off the rails mentally was the divorce and his company Fritzdin CC being liquidated.

He lost all his assets and insurance company Old Mutual cancelled his life cover. He was also facing criminal charges of armed robbery.

The robbery took place in February last year when Joubert pointed a firearm at a motorist and grabbed his car keys from an ignition after an altercation at a parking lot at night.

Video footage seen by City Press shows a man purported to be Joubert approaching a white car, pulling out what seems like a gun, cocking it, before pointing it at the driver.

One of the passengers in the vehicle can be seen fleeing.

The armed man returns to his car after taking keys from the vehicle and goes back to his car and drives off.

In a police docket dated 2018/08/18, in his report Joubert says the incident took place in Bloemfontein and admits taking the car keys of the other motorist but says nothing about pointing a firearm.

“Mr William Frederik Joubert … came personally to report that while in Bloemfontein some guy threatened to kill him and he grabbed the car keys so he could not follow him, he could not report the incident in Bloemfontein because he was drank.”

In the docket Joubert is charged with robbery with a firearm [pistol].

After Joubert was arrested following the incident he documented his stay in the police holding cells by taking pictures.

In one of the pictures, he is crying with tears visible flowing down his cheeks.

In another picture he shows his food, a few slices of brown bread, a boiled egg and tea. Another picture is a “selfie” with a toilet seat in the background.

Joubert, in a letter to Old Mutual on February 28 this year after his policy was cancelled the previous year due to him failing to disclose that he had post-traumatic stress disorder, he proves just how desperate the man had become.

Dated December 4 last year, Old Mutual responds: “We have been made aware of material medical information that was not disclosed to Old Mutual at the application stage for the above mentioned life covered.”

Old Mutual advised Joubert that if he wished to challenge its decision to cancel the policy he could write to them within 90 days, contact the internal arbitrator or the FAIS Ombudsman.

In his reply to Old Mutual of February 28, this year, Joubert argues that even though he now does have post-traumatic disorder, the condition was new as it had been triggered by recent events, including losing his wife.

The following is Joubert in his own words admitting that he had post-traumatic stress disorder: “ … the fact that I was admitted to Bloemcare was just an attempt to get a divorce agreement, to get custody of my children and to overturn the protection order that my ex-wife and her then boyfriend got against me. To be able to be evaluated in a psychological institution, it is logical there must be a reason for it. My behaviour by physically attacking the person who ‘stole’ my wife, was the reason for acute stress disorder. Or were I supposed to walk into the hospital and ask to be booked in, because I physically attacked ‘donnered’ another person. Otherwise what would the reason be for being evaluated?

“The fact is that I was not booked off sick or that I have been found that I am sick. I don’t see the need to explain more, to have my policies to be reinstated … Now I wish to explain my current medical condition. The fact that now I was diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder, is understandable taking into consideration what I have experienced, and still currently experiencing since the Bloemfontein incident,” wrote Joubert at the time.

When City Press approached another white man for comment a few kilometres from Joubert’s house, he was visible shaken and said he did not want to talk about him before running away: “That man hit me but nothing happened. And he was drunk. That is all I have to say. He thought he was clever.”

One of his black friend said when his company Fritzdin CC, which did electrical work was liquidated, Joubert lost a lot and never recovered.

“His company was probably one of the biggest electrical construction companies in the Eastern Cape. But he went through a liquidation. He had the biggest liquidation here in the Eastern Cape worth about more than R40 million.

“So, when that happened he lost all his properties. Everything was auctioned. He was trying a lot of things [businesses] but they were failing,” he said

The friend said about a month ago, he and other friends [white and black] stopped visiting Joubert’s house which used to be a hive of activities with parties non stop.

“He was not right. He was short-fused. He was unstable. He liked to fight. He would beat mostly white people. He would moer you. No one dared challenge Fritz because he was strong and big,” said the friend.

The man, who also assisted Joubert in his businesses, said he felt sad for both Hoyana and Joubert who were both friends to him.

“I am sad. I am sad for Anele. Am sad of Fritz. The two were close. I don’t know what happened in that house when the incident took place. All we knew was that someone was going to die in this house because Fritz was not okay. He wanted to kill himself,” he said.

Joubert barred all of his friends from the house and only remained with Hoyana who was living there with his fiance.

“Fritz was emotionally and mentally unstable. He was admitted at Bloemcare in 2015. He was suicidal. He was depressed. He used alcohol and other things that make people drunk, such as drugs.

“He was under a lot of stress and I don’t think in his sober senses he would have murdered Anele because they were friends. Anele was not his worker as many believe,” he said.


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January 26 2020