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Khayalethu arrested

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By MUSA NHLEKO - SWAZI TIMES-31-Jul-2009

MANZINI – Ncandweni Christ Ambassadors singer Khayalethu Masuku (31) of Malkerns was yesterday sentenced to three years in jail for three traffic offences, which include drink-driving.

Masuku of ‘Njenge Ndluzela’ fame was arrested on Wednesday evening at around 11pm by the Manzini Traffic Police next to William Pitcher Teachers’ College along the Manzini – Fairview public road. He was driving an Opel Vita sedan registered SD 245 ES.

Following his arrest, instead of being booked at the police holding cells, Ncandweni Christ Ambassadors leader and Member of Parliament (MP) Timothy Myeni is said to have arrived at the station and asked that Masuku be released to him. He is said to have made a promise that he would bring him the following morning (yesterday) to face his three charges of drink driving, stopping a vehicle on the roadway and driving without a licence. Indeed the MP kept his promise and brought him to the police station. Masuku’s wife Thabile is said to have come to get the vehicle, which was parked at the police station.

When he made his appearance before Manzini Magistrate Florence Msibi, Masuku elected to conduct his own defence and he later pleaded guilty to all three charges. Public Prosecutor Nomphumelelo Ngubeni did not lead evidence.

Mistake

Clad in a black blazer and a striped T-shirt, Masuku, when asked by Magistrate Msibi why he had committed the offences, only said it was a mistake. During mitigation the gospel singer said he was sorry for what had happened and told the court that his mind was not right when he decided to drive the car.

“Your Worship, I promise that I will never do it again and I would like to ask the court to forgive me,” said Masuku. Magistrate Msibi sentenced Masuku to two years imprisonment with an option of E2 000 fine on the first count, six months or E800 fine on count two and six months or E800 fine on the last count.

The sentences, according to Magistrate Msibi, will run consecutively, which means he will have to spend three years in jail or pay E3600 as fine. However, by the time of compiling this report Masuku had not paid his fine.

When Masuku was taken to the Manzini Magistrate’s Court by one Sergeant Dumisani Dube of the Traffic Department he wanted to take him to Magistrate Msibi’s chambers.

This was so that Magistrate Msibi would remand Masuku in her chambers but she is said to have told him that she would do so in court, which eventually happened.

This is not the first time that Masuku is arrested for drink- driving as sometime last year, he committed a similar offence and was convicted. After that, he had a wide ranging interview where he promised to remain ‘clean’ and further asked the Christian community to pray for him.


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