NPA STATEMENT ON ELECTION, POLITICAL AND PUBLIC VIOLENCE
02 AUGUST 2016
PRETORIA - The National Director of Public Prosecutions (‘NDPP’), Advocate Shaun Abrahams, is extremely concerned about the high levels of election, public and politically related violence in our country.
In this regard, the NDPP has committed teams of highly experienced prosecutors to work closely with law enforcement agencies responsible for investigating election, public and political violence related crimes across the country. There is particular focus on incidents which took place in Limpopo, KZN and Gauteng.
All matters relating hereto will be prioritised to ensure speedy finalization. Prosecutors will further provide guidance to investigators to ensure the expedition thereof.
The NDPP is further perturbed about public statements which are inflammatory in nature and which negatively impact on public peace, order and the security of the Republic. This conduct in effect negate the rule of law.
Today, in Vuwani, Baldwin Mutambe, Takalani Mavhina, Frank Muthathe and Takalani Mukhudi appeared in court on charges of intimidation and for contravening the Electoral Act, in that they allegedly intimidated members of the Vuwani community not to vote on 3 August 2016. Their matter has since been remanded to 15 August 2016, when their bail application is expected to be held.
The NPA is presently considering the merits of a number of criminal investigations emanating from various provinces in which members of the public were incited to commit other crimes.
52 People recently also appeared in the Vuwani regional court on numerous charges of malicious damage to property, public violence, defeating the ends of justice, 14 counts of arson, sedition, incitement, intimidation and robbery.
In one of these matters, Rothe Ratshifheti and 21 others appeared in court on 9 counts of arson relating to the incidents in which schools were set alight in Vuwani. Many of the accused were denied bail but later appealed to the High Court, where bail was granted. The aforementioned matters have been remanded to26 August 2016 for further investigations.
In Tshwane, Justice Mashoba appeared in the Pretoria Magistrates’ Court for the murder of Simon Modihe, who had been killed at an ANC meeting held at the Tshwane Events Centre.
In KwaZulu-Natal, Mbuyiselwa Shabalala and Thamsanqa Shezi appeared in court on two counts of murder, which incident took place at Mehlokazulu High School, Imbali, where an ANC Branch meeting was held. Their matter has been postponed to 23 August 2016 for further investigation.
In another matter, Bafanyana Shange and 4 others appeared in court on charges of murder and attempted murder, which stem from the eruption of violence at a SACP meeting in Inchanga. The NPA will continue to work tirelessly with its stakeholders in the Justice, Crime Prevention and Security Cluster to eradicate crime and to ensure that South Africa is a safer place for all.
Statement issued by the National Prosecuting Authority, 2 August 2016