Nelli Tembe

The NPA have issued a statement in the development of the investigation into AKA’s fiancée Nelli Tembe’s death.
Images via Instagram

Nelli Tembe: Family denied access to docket, question NPA ruling

Why now, what next? South Africans are questioning the NPA’s statement about developments in the death of AKA’s fiancée Nelli Tembe.

Nelli Tembe

The NPA have issued a statement in the development of the investigation into AKA’s fiancée Nelli Tembe’s death.
Images via Instagram

South Africans have more questions than answers after the National Prosecution Authority (NPA) revealed that they had declined to prosecute anyone in the death of Anele Nelli Tembe in 2021.  This, just days after the murder of her fiance AKA, real name Kiernan Forbes.

The NPA issued a statement on Monday, 13 February detailing their decision. AKA was shot and killed outside a Florida Road hotspot on last Friday.

His death comes almost two years after Nelli Tembe allegedly jumped to her death off the balcony of a Cape Town hotel. According to AKA, Nelli  – who he claims suffered from depression – went through with plans to commit suicide. However, her father Moses Tembe has repeatedly denied these claims.

ALSO READ: AKA and Nelli Tembe: Uncanny similarities between their deaths


On Monday, the NPA issued a statement justifying their decision surrounding the case of Nelli Tembe.

According to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) in the Western Cape Nicolette Bell, the NPA decided not to pursue prosecution after making an “informed decision” based on an “extensive nvestigation performed by South African Polcie Service, under the guidance of the NPA”, which included “several expert opinions and forensic reports”.

ALSO READ: ‘Spirits and karma’: Tweeps claim Nelli Tembe came to ‘fetch’ AKA

Instead, the DDP referred the matter for an inquest to be held. 

In the statement, several significant points were raised, including

  • Nelli Tembe’s family were denied access to a police docket pertaining to her death. 
  • The family also expressed their desire to make representations on why the NPA did not pursue prosecutions.
  • At the time of AKA’s death, an application to access the docket via the Promotion of Access to Information Act was pending.
  • The inquest into Nelli Tembe’s death was delayed after her family took action against the DDP’s ruling.


According to News24’s  Karen Maughn, Nelli Tembe’s death will now be investigated via an inquest.

She tweeted of the NPA’s statement: “Important to stress that this wasn’t a judicial decision. It was a decision made by the NPA and will result in Anele’s death being investigated by an inquest court. That court can still determine if anyone should be held responsible for her death”.

The NPA’s statement comes months after police claimed that Nelli Tembe’s death was “still under investigation.”

According to City Press, police had reportedly wrapped up their investigation into Nelli Tembe’s death in December 2021. The next step was to pass it on to the NPA, who would consider if it was worth pursuing.

The publication reported that the NPA previously stated that the death was a “suicide investigation.” However, they added that it had “elements of suspicion of a murder.”

However, The Citizen later claimed that the police did a U-turn, backtracking on their comments.

Western Cape Police spokesperson Colonel Andrè Traut told the publication in August 2022: “Kindly be advised that the death of Anele Tembe is still under investigation, and there are no new developments to report at this stage.”


On social media, South Africans have reacted to the latest developments investigating Nelli Tembe’s death.

Here is what Twitter users had to say:

@Gr3g_K3n: “Why was the initial request for access to the docket denied?”

@bonganizikalala: “Denying the victim’s attorney access to the docket says it all. NPA is known for scoring own goals but this statement and the timing thereof takes the cake.”

@Molebo_: “How was the family expected to make representation to the NDPP without having access to the docket?”

@Raymond68079939: “NPA.= Never Prosecute Anybody.”

@jsomething08: “This delay maybe to the Tembe family raised a lot of questions. Maybe they felt information is hidden from them. I’m sad for them.”

@majoyana31: “Someone took the matter into their own hands. Our justice system in this country has failed so many families.”

@FsTebza: “You denied the Tembe family justice. Now we are here.”

@VanDerMohammed: “The NPA releasing this Anele Tembe press release an immediate working day after AKA died is very telling. Our national Justice is under review”.