‘No racist language used’ in club fight

2012-11-09 00:00

TWO bouncers from Crowded House nightclub gave evidence in the magistrate’s court this week in favour of two brothers charged with using racist language and assaulting a club patron last September.

The court heard that the complainant in the case, Likwando Mbunwae, had carried a knife and knuckleduster inside the club.

The weapons were removed by bouncer, Jack Bama, but were returned to Mbunwae outside the club when he indicated that he wanted to go home in the early hours of the morning.

The bouncer on duty outside, James Mpwanba, told magistrate Linda Lewis that he saw his colleague return the weapons to Mbunwae, who put his knife into his back pocket.

Shortly thereafter he alleged that Mbunwae provoked a fight with brothers Nicholas and Jean-Pierre du Plooy on the pavement outside the club.

The bouncer said Mbunwae’s friends had tried to persuade him to leave, but he had put his hand into his back pocket, where he had his knife, and began shouting at the brothers, saying words to the effect that he was a “strong person with a black belt in karate” and challenging them to a fight.

Mbunwae was shouting “let’s go one by one”, he told the court.

In reply to questions put by Lewis, Mpwanba said he never saw Mbunwae draw the knife, only that he put his hand in the pocket where he’d seen him putting the knife moments before.

He said Jean-Pierre du Plooy rushed over and threw a punch at Mbunwae, but missed. He overbalanced and fell down.

Nicholas du Plooy went to his brother’s aid, but before anything further could happen he and other bouncers separated the trio.

The bouncer testified that he did not hear any racist terms including the words “white trash” or “k****r” being used during the fracas.

Under cross-examination, the bouncer confirmed that when Mbunwae had started shouting at the brothers and “even pointing” at them, Nicholas du Plooy had removed his shirt, preparing to fight.

“According to what I saw, it was the complainant who started insulting the two accused.

“But in terms of the fight, it was accused one [Jean-Pierre] who tried to punch the complainant, missed and fell down. His brother came to help and immediately we went to separate them,” he said.

Bama testified that it was Nicholas du Plooy who had complained to him earlier about Mbunwae carrying weapons inside the club, and he’d subsequently disarmed Mbunwae.

Later, when Mbunwae wanted to leave, he gave the weapons back to him discreetly outside, and returned to his duties inside the club. He did not see the fight, but heard about it from the other bouncers.

Bama told the court that later that morning he was working outside when Mbunwae returned and asked him where the white men who had beaten him were.

“He told me he wants revenge because these white guys beat him and he’s going to shoot and stab them,” said Bama.

The case was adjourned to November 19.

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