Two men who were sentenced to death by Justice Maruping Dibotelo in 2017 for the muder of a cab driver are appealing their sentence.
Matshidiso Tshidi Boikanyo and Moabi Seabelo Mabiletsa were convicted by the High Court for the murder of a Delux cab driver, Vincent Mopipi, by stabbing him 44 times with a knife on the 13th of September 2013 in Gaborone’s Block 9 location.
The court heard that on the fateful night the accused persons had called the taxi centre claiming they needed transport from Tlokweng to University of Botswana.
Mopipi then went to pick them and along the way they changed their destination saying they wanted to go to Block 9.
Upon reaching Block 9 the two knife-wielding men are said to have brutally killed the cab-driver and dumped him by the road side.
Matshidiso Boikanyo’s attorney Phendulani Elijah told the Court of Appeal this week that his client says he had lent someone his phone to call the cab.
He said the person is from Zimbabwe and he only knows him by Zimtoto name.
He said on the day of the incident his client never left Tlokweng.
“My Lord there is no proof that my client was picked by the cab, it could have been that Zimtoto guy or the cab driver picked some people along the way who committed the crime. Until they were arraigned before court, my client did not know the second accused. The ruling was based on circumstantial evidence and his phone being used to make a call is not enough evidence,” said Elijah.
He said according to the first witness in Block 9 where the incident happened she heard a person screaming ‘ke bolaelwang ke motho’ meaning why is this person killing me.
Elijah said the second witness said he heard a person screaming for help and when he looked outside he saw a man driving away from the scene.
He said his argument is that there was only one perpetrator according to the evidence brought before court by the witnesses.
Judge Walia objected Elijah’s defence saying circumstantial evidence can be stronger and more reliable than that of eye witnesses.
Judgment will be passed on the 8th of February.