News in Brief

By Drum Digital
25 November 2013

Four mineworkers are trapped in a mine near Robertville on the West Rand.

Miners trapped in Robertville

Four mineworkers are trapped in a mine near Robertville on the West Rand, paramedics said on Monday.

"Paramedics and rescue workers are currently on the scene where a mine shaft apparently collapsed, trapping the workers," ER24 spokesperson Christo Venter said.

-SAPA

Man washes up on Cape Town beach

The body of an 18-year-old man was found washed up on a shallow surf at Mnandi Beach on the False Bay coast in Cape Town on Sunday, said rescue officials.

National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) spokesperson Craig Lambinon said rescue officials were informed that five people who had been swimming at the beach were experiencing difficulty.

"Western Province lifeguards rescued four males from the water aged between 18 and 22 but [the] one male was missing," said Lambinon.

A search was conducted.

- SAPA

Four CCTV hijackers in court 

The four men accused of operating a string of car hijackings in the CBD are expected to appeared in the Johannesburg Magistrates Court on Monday.

They were arrested last Wednesday after police received a tip-off.

The men were allegedly involved in at least three hijackings this month alone.

All of the incidents happened in full view of other motorists.

The four first appeared in court on Friday, before their attorney, Irvin Maseko, asked the magistrate for a postponement so he could make written submissions for bail.

They were arrested after being captured on CCTV footage.

Maseko said on Friday his clients were wrongfully accused.

The lawyer said the footage allegedly showing his clients carrying out three hijackings can’t be trusted as the footage was unclear.

– SAPA

Marikana legal aid will short change South African

Paying the legal fees of Marikana miners will have far reaching consequences on Legal Aid SA's sustainability, the organisation said on Monday.

"We believe that this judgment has to be appealed as the order was made despite absence of evidence as to the costs that would be entailed by such order," CEO Vidhu Vedalankar said in a statement.

"More importantly, [it has to be appealed because of] the impact of such order on the finite resources of Legal Aid SA."

The order would also have an effect on Legal Aid SA's ability to meet its statutory and constitutional duties, she said.

Legal Aid SA was granted leave to appeal on Wednesday.

-SAPA

Mpisane case postponed to new year

A case in which Durban businesswoman Shauwn Mpisane is accused of interfering with witnesses was postponed to next year in the Pinetown Regional Court on Monday.

Mpisane, who is out on R50,000 bail, will now have to wait until January 31 to see if the State will proceed with the case against her.

It is one of three cases against her.

Mpisane, who is charged with defeating the ends of justice, is accused of contacting one of the witnesses expected to testify in her fraud trial in the Durban Regional Court.

The postponement was granted to await the outcome of representations made to the National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP) in the matter of her fraud case.

Last month the Durban Regional Court granted the State a postponement to January 31 in that matter to allow newly appointed NDPP Mxolisi Nxasana time to consider representations made by Mpisane.

Mpisane is accused of inflating the invoices of her close corporation, Zikhulise Cleaning, Maintenance, and Transport, by R4.7 million in an attempt to cut her tax bill.

She is also accused of violating the Close Corporations Act by remaining Zikhulise's sole member when she had a previous fraud conviction.

In July, Rafik Bhana SC, for Mpisane, accused the State of suppressing evidence and questioned prosecutor Meera Naidu's conduct. - SAPA

EFF opts out of Mpumalanga by-elections

The Economic Freedom Fighters will not contest by-elections due to take place in Mpumalanga on Wednesday.

The EFF's national head of campaigns Goodridge Gaddi told a Sapa correspondent on Monday the party was instead focusing its energy on winning next year's general elections.

"EFF has taken a decision not to contest the local government by-elections, although there are EFF

Provincial Independent Electoral Commission spokesman Sibusiso Nkosi said by-elections would be held in five wards on Wednesday.

"A total of 25,403 voters are registered in the five wards where by-elections will be taking place," he said. - SAPA

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