‘AKA was followed since he’s landing at airport. It was a plot well orchestrated’- says KZN Police Comm Mkhwanazi

ALLEGEDLY R800 000 was paid for the hit on rapper AKA.

On Tuesday evening Police minister Bheki Cele and KwaZulu-Natal police commissioner Lieutenant-General Nhlanhla Mkhwanazi, revealed to the public, for the very first time, the assassination plot, progress and arrest of suspects behind the much publicised death of Kiernan Forbes in Durban, February 10, 2023.

Six suspects have been arrested thus far, since the investigations began in April 2023, they told the impromptu press briefing in Durban.

They detailed AKA was followed from airport landing hours before his killing as part of an elaborate assassination plot hatched by six arrested suspects. AKA was killed with his business partner Tebello Motsoane, on that fateful evening.

Lieutenant-General Nhlanhla Mkhwanazi announced that one more suspect would be arrested.

Commissioner Mkhwanazi also said police had worked in tandem with the National Prosecuting Authority to tighten up the case for court.

He said police “suspected” the motive for the hit, but it was not yet clear. The six suspects are scheduled to appear in court on Thursday.

Mkhwanazi said those arrested included the hit “coordinator”, the two suspected gunmen — two “spotters” who were part of the lookout, one of whom was watching AKA from inside the restaurant, as well as the firearms and getaway vehicles “organiser”. 

“The spotter initially followed Mr Forbes from the airport on arrival, to the hotel, as well as the restaurant where the incident happened,” Mkhwanazi said, also indicating the hit was supposed to have been made while traveling in the car, but since he took long at WISH restaurant with his friends, the killers decided to take him out on the spot. 

“This person who followed AKA was also responsible for hiring and gathering resources together, the whole team together, as well as the rewards that came thereafter when the people had done their jobs — that payments that were done.”

Its alleged R800 000 was offered for AKA’s head.

 The five other accused — including the other spotter, the vehicle and arms organiser, and the gunmen — were linked to other multiple murder cases.

Says Mkhwanazi- four vehicles — including a BMW that followed AKA around Durban — and the alleged murder weapon are part of the evidence the police gathered. 

Four suspects were in Durban, two in eSwatini after being arrested in their alleged hideout, while Mkhwanazi said the seventh is on the run following media reports from eSwatini.

 Cele said the oldest suspect was 36, and that all of the suspects had been paid for their part in the crime, adding that payment “wasn’t much”.

Cele congratulated the team that caught the alleged killers, saying cops “did not sleep for 48 hours to get the final people” after arresting the first person in April last year.

“Depending on the investigations, more arrest(s) are imminent, including a well-known person, as we look for that head that ordered the hit,” warned Cele, who boasted “we’ve been talking to you media but clearly you weren’t listening”.

The six accused will appear in court on Thursday.

Latest news is another suspect has been arrested, bringing this to 7.

This is a developing story.

AKA’s girlfriend Nelli Tembe died in April 2021 after falling to her death apparently from the 10th floor of the Pepperclub Hotel in Cape Town.

The circumstances around her death are or were still under investigation.

Image (Police Minister Bheki Cele and KZN Police Commissioner Lieutenant-General Nhlanhla Mkhwanazi at the media briefing).

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