Life sentence welcomed for intern doctor's killer

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

The Limpopo government has welcomed the ruling against Ntiyiso Xilumani, who killed his girlfriend, Dr Shongile Pretty Nkhwashu, in January this year.

Xilumani, 26, who pleaded guilty, was sentenced to life imprisonment on Tuesday.

Limpopo High Court Judge President, Ephraim Mokgoba, meted out the sentence after a two-day trial.

The perpetrator told the court that an argument ensued over the interference of Nkhwashu's father in their relationship, IOL reported.

“She bit me on my finger,” Xilumani said.

He then told the court that he grabbed Nkhwashu, 25, by the throat, threw her on the bed and strangled her until she stopped moving. Xilumani used Nkwashu's stethoscope -- which the deceased at some stage had shown him how it works -- and found that she had stopped breathing.

It was also heard that Xilumani had a history of abusing Nkhwashu, who was also the mother of his child.   

Limpopo Health MEC, Dr Phophi Ramathuba, said she was pleased with the sentence handed down by the high court.

“This will send a clear message to all the men out there, who still think they can continue to abuse, kill and rape our women and children, and walk free.

“Dr Nkwashu was also our daughter as the department, whom together with her family, we were still expecting a lot from her.

“We are happy that justice has prevailed and the fight against gender-based violence has received a boost after this judgment,” said Ramathuba.

President Cyril Ramaphosa has described GBV as a pandemic, as cases of women and children dying at the hands of men continue to rise exponentially during the COVID-19 crisis.

The President has been calling on the men of South Africa to do and be better.

“Patriarchy is practised and exercised by men, and men think that they’re superior to women. Some men believe that they own women and therefore, they can order them around, beat them up, rape them and kill them. It is this patriarchy that prevails in men that we need to break down,” said the President earlier this year. –

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