JOHANNESBURG – Former African National Congress Youth League (ANCYL) regional leader Patrick Wisani, who was found guilty of murdering his girlfriend, was on Thursday sentenced to 20 years imprisonment by the Johannesburg High Court.
Wisani, 32, was convicted of murdering his then 24-year-old partner, Nosipho Mandleleni, in Yeoville in September 2015. He was also found guilty of assaulting her twin sister, Siphokazi Mandleleni, and her friend Zimbini Mathibe in a bid to stop them from testifying against him.
Judge Mohamed Ismail sentenced Wisani to 20 years in prison for murder, one year for intimidation and one year for assault. All sentences will run concurrently.
“The court had to bear in mind that it was dealing with a human being and couldn’t be revengeful,” said the judge before he pronounced the sentence.
He had considered both arguments presented in mitigation and aggravation. The state felt that Wisani deserved life imprisonment while the defence said 12 years was a suitable sentence.
“I’m of the view that this was not a premeditated murder, but rather you [Wisani] acted in anger which ended in death,” Ismail said.
“The postmortem showed that the deceased bled to death. She was beaten and had over 40 blows to her body.”
Ismail said domestic violence was prevalent in South Africa, and that Wisani’s actions were careless and that he showed arrogance towards the victims as well as that he never showed remorse as he called all witnesses liars.
“The only thing in your favour is that you have no previous convictions and that you are educated. No educated person would behave this way. This kind of behavior has no place in our Constitutional dispensation,” he said.
“This is not the type of case to have a life sentence because he is a first offender, at the prime of his life and could have a good impact on the community once rehabilitated and released from prison.”
Judge Ismail told the packed court that the cycle of violence against women needed to end.
After the court proceedings had ended the mother of the deceased, Noxolo Mandleleni said: “I can’t say anything because my child won’t come back from the dead. It’s a small sentence. I wanted him to get life imprisonment”.
National Prosecution Authority (NPA) spokesperson Phindi Mjonodwano said: “As the NPA we welcome the sentence and believe it’s appropriate and the judge made a decision from the information before him.
“We in agreement when he says such behaviour has no place in our constitutional dispensation. It calls for all arms of the state to work as a collective in order to deal with such issues effectively.”
There was no immediate indication that the former ANCYL leader would appeal the sentences.
– African News Agency (ANA)