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Former Ratlou Municipality manager Cassius Sejake to apply for bail
20 October 2020, 11:42 AM

A group of community members wearing African National Congress (ANC) and Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) t-shirts are chanting slogans outside the Atamelang Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday morning.

This as the Ratlou Local Municipality’s former municipal manager Cassius Sejake is expected to make a formal bail application following his arrest by the Hawks yesterday.

Sejake was arrested for alleged failure to follow tender processes in the awarding of tenders of approximately R5.8-million between 2018 and 2019.

A Spokesperson for the South African National Civic Organisation (Sanco) Reggy Seokolo says Sejake must not be released on bail.

“We are pleading with the judiciary that they must not release Mr Sejake because he is going to infringe with the law investigators. So we are saying that Mr Sejake must be kept in jail so that he must not disturb the ongoing process of investigations. We are saying that there is no stability in the municipality. Everybody is doing as they wish”, says Seokolo.

In the video below, Sejake’s lawyers say their clients arrest by the Hawks is politically motivated:

Tshegofatso Pule murder accused back in court
20 October 2020, 9:31 AM

The case against the man accused of the murder of Tshegofatso Pule is expected to resume on Tuesday morning in the High Court in Johannesburg.

Muzikayise Malephane has been charged with premeditated murder.

28-year-old Pule was found hanging from a tree at an open veld in Roodepoort west of Johannesburg in June.

She was eight months pregnant at the time.

During her funeral service, multiple speakers made calls for justice to be served for Pule.

One of the speakers, who is Pule’s aunt, knelt on the ground and made a compassionate plea to South African men to stop killing women:

Outrage over gender-based violence

Pule’s murder sparked a public outcry due to the surge in gender-based violence incidents in the country.

There have also been numerous calls for perpetrators of GBV to receive harsher sentences.

Among other murder tragedies is that of Naledi Phangidawo in Mossel Bay in June, who was hacked to death with an axe by her former lover.

The Commission for Gender Equality has since expressed its disgust at the high rates of GBV incidents that the country is facing.

The commission’s spokesperson Jabu Baloyi urged all men to take an active stand against the scourge.

President Cyril Ramaphosa has said up to 51% of South African women have experienced some form of violence at the hands of a loved one.

In the video below, Police Minister Bheki Cele outlines interventions by the police to tackle gender-based violence:

-Additional reporting by SABC News.

State to cross examine former Hawks head in Omotoso trial
20 October 2020, 8:17 AM

A legal twist has caused another delay in the bail application of rape accused Timothy Omotoso who has been in prison for three and a half years.

Judge Phillip Zilwa allowed the state to call lieutenant colonel Brenda Magwangqana to testify on the issues around his arrest in April 2017.

She was head of the Hawks at the time of Omotoso’s arrest.

However, she was earlier called as a witness for the defence.

Advocate Terry Price can cross examine her on Tuesday, but indicated that he will argue a witness cannot testify for both sides.

Omotoso and two co-accused are facing more than 90 sex related charges in the Port Elizabeth High Court.

The main case has meanwhile been postponed to the 2nd of November.

Omotoso could be deported if granted bail

State and defence lawyers in the Omotoso’s case are at loggerheads over his documentation after he was declared a prohibited person by Home Affairs.

The state says there is a strong possibility that Omotoso would be deported should he be granted bail.

Investigating officer of the Hawks warrant officer Peter Plaatjies said they have been unable to get hold of his two passports since his arrest in 2017.

They are in the possession of his attorney, and they were only given copies thereof.

In the video below, Omotoso appeared in court last week in what was his third bail application, which was denied by the state:

State Capture Inquiry to hear more Transnet related evidence
20 October 2020, 7:31 AM

The Commission of Inquiry into State Capture will on Tuesday hear evidence from former Managing Director Rail for Hatch, Henk Bester.

Former Transnet Executive for Capital Development Deidre Strydom will also testify.

On Monday, Former Transnet Board Chairperson Mafika Mkhwanazi told the Inquiry that it was irresponsible of the then board members to reinstate former Transnet CEO Siyabonga Gama.

Gama was found guilty of over 30 counts of misconduct following an inquiry.

Mkhwanazi denied that he was instructed by former Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba to reinstate Gama, insisting that Gigaba only asked the board to review Gama’s dismissal at the time:

 

 

Brendin Horner murder accused suspects to apply for bail
20 October 2020, 6:54 AM

The bail hearing of Sekola Matlaletsa and Sekwetje Mahlamba is expected to resume on Tuesday at the Senekal Magistrate’s Court in the Free State.

The two are accused of the brutal murder of farm manager Brendin Horner earlier this month.

Their first court appearance turned violent when a group of farmers stormed the court building demanding that the accused be handed to them.

The farmers damaged court property, overturned and burned a police vehicle.

In the video below, farmers also called for a return of the death penalty:

The defence team is expected to cross examine the investigating officer in the murder case that has got the nation talking.

The National Prosecuting Authority believes it has a strong case against Mahlamba and Matlaletsa.

It has emerged in court that during Mahlamba’s arrest, police found blood stained clothes in his home.

Mahlamba through his lawyer said on the day of Horner’s murder he was at a traditional ceremony.

The court also heard that there was property believed to be that of Horner found in one of the accused possession.

 

Tensions between EFF members and farmers

This case has attracted the attention of diverse groups and organisations since it started.

The bail hearing started last Friday amid heightened tensions outside court between members of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) and farmers.

During his address outside the court, EFF leader Julius Malema appealed to party members to address racism head on.

Stark political and racial divisions lay bare; with the red berets in their numbers to defend state assets after a police vehicle was damaged.

The Afrikaner farming community on the other hand called for an end to farm killings.

Malema urged party members to fearlessly pursue the struggle for land expropriation without compensation.

He said their stance in Senekal is to stop racism that may have spread across the country:

-Additional reporting by Samkele Maseko. 

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