The National Prosecution Authority has explained why it elected not to prosecute anyone after the death of Anele Tembe, the late fiancée of slain rapper Kiernan ‘AKA’ Forbes.
Anele fell to her death from the tenth floor of a Cape Town hotel in April 2021.
AKA was gunned down in a suspected hit on Friday night, while leaving a restaurant on Durban’s popular Florida Road. His killers are yet to be found.
The NPA said Western Cape Director of Public Prosecutions, advocate Nicolette Bell, decided not to prosecute anyone for Anele’s death of Tembe based on extensive investigations which were conducted by the SAPS and prosecutors, who produced expert opinions and forensic reports.
“After careful consideration thereof, (Bell) decided not to institute any prosecution in respect of the death of Tembe and that the matter be referred for an inquest to be held,” said NPA Western Cape spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila.
He explained that the Tembe family was informed of the decision in June last year, in a meeting which included police detectives and a prosecutorial team from the office of the DPP.
Ntabazalila said the Tembe family later said it wished to make representations regarding the DPP’s decision to the National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP).
“As a result thereof, the inquest regarding the death of Tembe was delayed pending representations to the NDPP,” he said.
Subsequently, an application to have access to the docket was served on the NPA in terms of the Promotion of Access to Information Act 2 of 2000 (PAIA) after an initial request to have access to the docket was denied.
“At the time of Forbes death, the PAIA application was pending and the attorneys appearing for Tembe’s family had not lodged their representations to the NDPP,” said Ntabazalila.
IOL has made several attempts to seek comment from Manqoba Zungu, the Tembe family spokesperson.
He could not be reached for comment on Monday afternoon.****
The 22-year-old Anele fell to her death from the 10th floor of the upmarket Pepperclub Hotel in Cape Town, on 11 April 2021. She was with AKA at the time.
Following Anele’s death, AKA sat with broadcast journalist Thembekile Mrototo in his Bryanston home in Joburg and discussed his “tumultuous“ relationship with Tembe and the events leading up to her tragic death.
AKA told Mrototo that Anele threatened to kill herself by jumping over the balcony.
“We had been having a particularly difficult week in our relationship, lots of arguments and disagreements.
“We sat down and we spoke and we started disagreeing again and things got heated,” he said at the time.
He said that while he called the hotel reception for security and while the events were blurry, he remembered walking out of the bathroom and not seeing her anywhere in the room.
He added that he then walked to the balcony and saw her body on the street below.
AKA also said he was not allowed to speak at the funeral and had been stunned by comments by Anele’s father, Moses Tembe, who denied that Anele had died by suicide.
Police Minister Bheki Cele, who was an unscheduled speaker at the funeral, also made AKA uneasy and he said he approached Tembe Sr about his and the minister’s remarks at the funeral.
Tembe Sr had said that his daughter was not suicidal, nor did she take her own life.
“I was not there when Anele met her fate… I neither seek to attack any person nor cast aspersions or suspicions nor stigmatise any mental condition.
“However, I can’t allow an unfortunate narrative to go unchallenged. A narrative that irks me to no end as a father, which maliciously pervades some circles, is that Anele, my daughter, was chronically suicidal or had suicidal tendencies,” he said at the time.
After AKA’s death, Tembe Sr released a statement saying that as a parent, he felt deep pain for Kiernan’s parents.
He went on to describe AKA as an extraordinary and talented musician.
“His music contributes meaningfully to South Africa’s and indeed Africa’s rich music tapestry. We therefore extend our condolences to his extended family – his fans. May his soul rest in eternal peace,” he said.
Speaking to IOL on Monday, Tembe’s family spokesperson Manqoba Zungu could not confirm whether the family would pursue the submissions to the NDPP.
In an updated comment later on Monday evening, Zungu said out of respect for the Forbes family, the Tembe family preferred to not comment any further on the matter.
“The family has decided to rather not focus on the NPA press release.
“The Forbes and Tembe family have lost a loved one and as family, we will not be making any comments on this matter.
“Let’s respect the Forbes family’s wishes”.
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