Supporters gather for Malema at court

2013-11-28 08:52
Julius Malema (File, Sapa)

Julius Malema (File, Sapa)

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VIDEO: Malema in court

2013-11-28 10:30

EFF leader Julius Malema smiles as he heads into court to face charges of fraud, corruption, money-laundering, and racketeering. Watch. WATCH

Polokwane - A crowd of protesters gathered near the Polokwane Circuit of the High Court in Pretoria where streets were closed to traffic ahead of EFF leader Julius Malema's court appearance on Thursday.

A stage was erected and many people wearing red berets gathered around it.

Malema's supporters held placards and banners indicating which regions they came from.

They also blew vuvuzelas and some waved knobkerries as they chanted songs against President Jacob Zuma.

"Muso wa Zuma reya o menola", meaning "we will unseat Zuma's government", they sang.

Traffic was bumper to bumper.

Fraud, money-laundering charges

Six streets leading to the court were barricaded with security wire, forcing motorists, workers and shoppers to use alternate routes.

The expelled ANC Youth League president faces charges of fraud, corruption, money-laundering, and racketeering.

It is alleged that he made nearly R4m from corrupt activities.

Malema is out on R10 000 bail. His four co-accused, who are his business associates, are out on bail of R40 000 each.

On Thursday, the Economic Freedom Fighters leader is expected to make representations to the judge in an attempt to have the charges against him dropped.

Company paid R43m

The State alleges that the five misrepresented themselves to the Limpopo roads and transport department, leading to a R52m contract being awarded to On-Point Engineering.

According to court papers, Malema had business ties with Lesiba Gwangwa, one of the co-accused and a director of On-Point Engineering.

Malema's Ratanang Family Trust was an indirect shareholder in On-Point.

The department paid the company R43m. According to the charge sheet, Malema substantially benefited from this payment, using it to buy a farm and a Mercedes-Benz.

If the charges are not dropped, Malema's trial would be heard from 30 September to 31 October next year.

- Were you there? Send us your eyewitness accounts or send us your photos

Read more on:    eff  |  julius malema  |  polokwane  |  fraud

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