A dog named Benjie was stabbed to death in public by two men on May 10, 2018. Since then, the Cape of Good Hope SPCA has been tirelessly working to bring justice to this innocent pooch and make sure those responsible are prosecuted.
The owner had buried Benjie in his garden in Khayelitsha, and the SPCA’s Inspector Siviwe Noko was dispatched with the grisly task of digging up Benjie’s remains. These were taken directly to the State Vet for post mortem purposes.
“We were in the process of gathering further evidence when the video of the attack went viral on social media. This video has recently resurfaced and is currently being recirculated on social media where it is being connected to the very tragic and fatal mauling of a child in Gugulethu. We confirm that the two matters are completely unrelated and remind everyone that taking the law into your own hands may well result in you facing criminal charges,” said the SPCA in a statement.
A man named Sihle Mabambo was identified from the video and arrested on May 28, 2018. He made his first court appearance a day later.
About 11 months later, the second man in the video, Mibongo Siyokwane, was identified after a large-scale manhunt and a reward for information on his whereabouts was offered. He was arrested on April 10, 2019, and appeared at the Khayelitsha Magistrate’s Court the next day before remaining in custody until his bail hearing.
“Mr Sihle Mbambo and Mr Mibongo Siyokwane of Khayelitsha are now both being held accountable for this heinous crime and are facing charges in respect of contraventions of The Animals Protection Act No.71 of 1962,” says the SPCA. “There have been several court appearances since, the most recent being the 5th of December 2019. Despite Inspector Noko’s exemplary testimony and efforts to date, the case was once again been postponed due to the non-appearance of the accused.”
The court issued a warrant of arrest for the accused after he did not appear at his next court date on January 16, 202o.
“Unfortunately, the Covid-19 pandemic then saw the closure of the Khayelitsha courts as the area reached hot spot status but the courts have since reopened and Inspector Noko will be back in court today [January 22] to fight for justice for Benjie,” added the SPCA.
“Many individuals supported our call to submit affidavits in support of the handing down of the harshest possible penalty for this crime. Our sincerest thanks go to all those who responded to this call and whose affidavits have been included in the case file. We also thank all those who came forward with leads and information and contributed significantly to this case.
“We also extend our gratitude to SAPS Khayelitsha and commend our own Inspector Siviwe Noko for his commitment and dedication in the search of the accused and the pursuit of justice for Benjie.”
Picture/s: Facebook / Cape of Good Hope SPCA