Witbank mom alleged to have killed four kids 'not in right mind': lawyer

14 January 2019 - 13:30
By Naledi Shange
Zinhle Maditla
Image: Zinhle Maditla/Facebook Zinhle Maditla

The bail application of the 24-year-old Witbank woman accused of killing her four children in December got under way in the Witbank Magistrate's Court on Monday.

Zinhle Maditla's lawyer pleaded with the court for his client to be sent for mental observation.

Jabulani Maphete submitted that Maditla could not have been in a "right state of mind when the alleged offence was committed."

Dressed in a long striped dress, Maditla sat in the dock, with a hand resting on her cheek.

Earlier, she had entered the court with her face covered with a green blouse.

She only removed the blouse once the magistrate ordered her to do so.

State prosecutor Johan Harmse indicated that he was not opposed to Maditla being sent for mental observation.

Maditla's children, aged between 11 months and eight years, were laid to rest in her absence last week.

The bodies of Ethan, Shaniqua, Blessing and Minenhle were found by relatives on December 30 after Zinhle allegedly phoned to tell them she had left something for them at her home.

She is the main suspect behind the killings.

According to police, the children's corpses had already begun decomposing when they were found.

All four had been wrapped in blankets.

It was suspected that the children had died from poisoning.

It was alleged that the children had last been seen alive on December 26 but according to their funeral programme, they were believed to have died on the following day.

Maditla had handed herself over to police and was hospitalised shortly thereafter.

Police had said she seemed weak and drowsy at the time.