Cases that kept pub­lic cap­ti­vated

Ex-pres­i­dent Zuma goes back to court

Sunday World - - Sunday Report - By Meta Mphahlele [email protected]­day­

Whether it was for­mer pres­i­dent Ja­cob Zuma in the dock, his son Duduzane Zuma, the Je­sus Do­min­ion In­ter­na­tional se­nior pas­tor Ti­mothy Omo­toso, Fees Must Fall ac­tivist Bonginkosi Khany­ile, South Africans were gripped by sev­eral key court cases in 2018.

As the courts resume nor­mal duty this month af­ter the fes­tive hol­i­days, some of the pend­ing high-pro­file cases will be back on the roll.

Below are some of the cases that will con­tinue to cap­ti­vate Mzansi in 2019:

■ Omo­toso’s rape and hu­man traf­fick­ing trial was post­poned to Fe­bru­ary 4 2019 by the Eastern Cape high court in Port El­iz­a­beth. Omo­toso and his two co-ac­cused face 97 charges rang­ing from sex­ual as­sault to rape and hu­man traf­fick­ing.

Late last year, the Supreme Court of Ap­peal dis­missed a bid to have Judge Man­dela Makaula re­cuse him­self for be­ing “bi­ased”.

One of the al­leged vic­tims and wit­nesses who has al­ready taken the stand in the case, Ch­eryl Zondi, has since launched a foun­da­tion to help vic­tims of sex­ual as­sault. The foun­da­tion had al­ready re­ceived a kick- start of R1.5m from the Na­tional Lot­ter­ies Com­mis­sion.

■ Ar­gu­ments in Zuma’s cor­rup­tion case will resume at the high court in Pi­eter­mar­itzburg in May 2019.

Zuma is fac­ing charges rang­ing from rack­e­teer­ing, cor­rup­tion, money laun­der­ing and fraud re­lat­ing to 783 pay­ments he al­legedly re­ceived in con­nec­tion with the con­tro­ver­sial 1999 Arms Deal.

The de­ci­sion to pros­e­cute Zuma was made in 2017 by for­mer na­tional di­rec­tor of pub­lic pros­e­cu­tions Shaun Abra­hams de­spite pre­sen­ta­tions by Zuma why he shouldn’t be pros­e­cuted.

■ The pre-trial hear­ing against Duduzane will also be heard. He is fac­ing cul­pa­ble homi­cide case af­ter two peo­ple died when his Porsche crashed into a taxi on a high­way in 2014.

■ Khany­ile will know his fate this month when he is sen­tenced af­ter the state fi­nalises its pre-sen­tence re­port.

Khany­ile was ar­rested in 2016 dur­ing fees protests and was found guilty of pub­lic vi­o­lence, il­le­gal gath­er­ing, ob­struct­ing traf­fic, caus­ing a nui­sance on pub­lic roads and pos­ses­sion of ex­plo­sives. He spent about six months in jail be­fore he was granted bail of R250 by the Con­sti­tu­tional Court.

Khany­ile plans to ap­ply for a par­don once sen­tenced.

■ The En­nerdale fa­ther who is fac­ing a case of mur­der will know in Fe­bru­ary whether he will be charged with cul­pa­ble homi­cide or mur­der.

Em­manuel Tsha­bal­ala mis­tak­enly shot and killed his son in June when he thought he was a hi­jacker when his son knocked on the win­dow of his car af­ter evening classes.

Tsha­bal­ala was ini­tially charged with mur­der but his le­gal rep­re­sen­ta­tive had since made rep­re­sen­ta­tions to the na­tional di­rec­tor of pub­lic pros­e­cu­tions ask­ing that the mur­der charge be changed to cul­pa­ble homi­cide.

■ The two ac­cused in the Vlak­fontein mur­der will be back in court this month. Ernest Mabaso, 27, and Fita Khupe, 61, face seven counts of mur­der af­ter they al­legedly killed three women and four chil­dren of the Khoza fam­ily in Oc­to­ber.

Mabaso is also fac­ing three counts of rape af­ter he al­legedly raped the three women, claim­ing it was un­der the in­struc­tion of Khupe. Khupe’s lawyer asked the Protea mag­is­trate’s court to post­pone the mat­ter be­cause he had a fam­ily emer­gency.

■ Eco­nomic Free­dom Fight­ers leader Julius Malema is ex­pected back in the New­cas­tle mag­is­trate’s court next month.

He is ac­cused of in­cit­ing sup­port­ers to in­vade land. Malema also ap­peared in the North Gaut­eng high court in De­cem­ber af­ter the state charged him for en­cour­ag­ing peo­ple to oc­cupy land wher­ever they choose as per the Free­dom Char­ter.

Malema’s other case of land grab­bing will be back in the Bloem­fontein mag­is­trates’s court in June this year.

■ A 30-year-old pas­tor from Soshanguve, Pre­to­ria, ac­cused of rap­ing young boys that he trained to be pas­tors at his church, Hands of God In­ter­na­tional Min­istries, will be back in court this month.

The case was post­poned for fur­ther in­ves­ti­ga­tions. The pas­tor is ac­cused of oil­ing him­self be­fore pen­e­trat­ing the boys af­ter he told them they were the cho­sen ones in his church.

/ Alais­ter Rus­sell

For­mer pres­i­dent Ja­cob Zuma and his son Duduzane Zuma at the Rand­burg mag­is­trate’s court in Jo­han­nes­burg. Duduzane faces a cul­pa­ble homi­cide charge.

/ Werner Hills

Pas­tor Ti­mothy Omo­toso faces mul­ti­ple rape charges.

Thuli Dlamini /

Stu­dent ac­tivist Bonginkosi Khany­ile.

/ Tankiso Makhetha

Mur­der ac­cused Fita Khupe.

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