South Africa, Durban – Nonkululeko Makhathini pleaded guilty in the Pietermaritzburg High Court this week. She was sentenced to 20 years for the murder and 12 years for the robbery of Mohammed Hoosian, but the sentences will run concurrently.
Hoosian, the owner of a shop called Steak Den in Orient Heights, where Makhathini did part-time work, was killed on March 24.
In her plea and sentence agreement, she said she worked for the shop owner when her family needed food.
On the day of the murder, Makhathini said she had told her friends, Nkosi and Ntembeko, there was no food at home and she needed to get food for her family.
They agreed to rob Hoosian. She said she, Nkosi and Ntembeko, walked from Copesville to his shop, where her two friends waited outside.
Makhathini said the shop was closed, but the owner opened the sliding door, allowed her to enter, and locked the door.
She said she sent a Facebook message to Nkosi to inform her and Ntembeko that Hoosian had locked the door and she would look for keys to unlock it.
Makhathini said she found the keys, but Hoosian saw her and asked her why she was carrying the keys.
She said she lied that she wanted to go home.
Makhathini said Hoosian told her he did not believe her and pushed her to the ground.
She said when she fell on the floor, she saw a knife at the sink and decided to use it to stab him.
Makhathini said she stabbed Hoosian in his face, neck and stomach until he stopped struggling.
When she broke the glass of the sliding door as she was trying to leave, the neighbours heard and called the police.
Makhathini said she ran to the till and took R1 400 cash, cigarettes and cellphone vouchers belonging to different networks.
She escaped through the shop window and ran home.
The following day, she was arrested by police and confessed.
The court heard Makhathini lost her parents when she was 5 and lived with her 79-year-old grandmother and three siblings.