The Potchefstroom Regional Court in the North West has acquitted National Assembly Speaker Thandi Modise on all charges of animal cruelty against her.
This comes after her defence led by Advocate Dali Mpofu brought an application to have Modise discharged in terms of Section 174 of the Criminal Procedure Act.
Modise faced six charges of animal neglect after the National Council of Societies for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (NSPCA) found dead and starved animals on her farm in North West in 2014.
Court acquits Thandi Modise of all charges of animal neglect:
AfriForum’s Private Prosecution Unit, prosecuted Modise privately on behalf of the NSPCA arguing that she abandoned the animals.
Delivering his judgment, Magistrate Ben Mtebele said there was no sufficient evidence to prove that Modise was guilty of the charges.
The prosecution earlier argued that it had provided enough evidence in court about the animals that died. This comes after the defence team lead by Advocate Dali Mpofu filed the Section 174 application of the Criminal Procedure Act, for the charges against Modise to be withdrawn.
Advocate Gerrie Nel of the Afri-Forum private prosecution told the court that the accused had the responsibility of taking care of her farm. He said although there might be discrepancies in the evidence given by Tebogo Mokaedi, Modise’s former employee, the court should not disregard his evidence.
Advocate Nel said even though the accused might not have been involved directly in the appointment of Tebogo Mokaedi, she had the responsibility of paying him for the service he rendered on the farm as the owner of the farm.
However, Advocate Dali Mpofu representing Thandi Modise indicated to the court that the feed was bought a number of times and she also procured water for the animals. Mpofu is adamant that his client did not abandon the farm.
On Thursday, Veterinarian, Dr. Sameer Abbas testified that most of the livestock at Thandi Modise’s farm in North West suffered severe emaciation: