Vulindlela accused appear in court

2011-09-21 00:00

SIXTY men and women who allegedly participated in a public protest were released on R200 bail each by the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court yesterday.

They are charged with public violence and assault following violent protests in ward 5 in the Vulindlela area where tyres and trees were burnt and rocks placed as a blockade on the Bulwer road.

Residents of ward 5 protested on September 13 against the election of the ward committee and the councillor, Bonga Shozi.

They allegedly assaulted two community members passing by, Paul Ndlovu and Mzikawukho Mthembu.

Residents from Vulindlela started gathering outside the court in Market Square before the 60 accused were due to appear.

The residents sent some members to represent them in court, but they were prevented from entering because there was space only for the accused. The public gallery had to be cleared so that the accused could listen to the court proceedings.

State prosecutor Rene Padayachee did not oppose bail, but told the court that the investigation is continuing and that all the accused should make sure they are available for an identification parade.

The police have not yet viewed video footage of the protest.

Magistrate Reard Abrahams warned the accused that it will take a long time for the court to deal with the case, so they should attend court on time to prevent unnecessary delays.

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