Chaos in Savoi case as accused fail to show

2011-05-06 00:00

THE high-profile case involving Uruguyan businessman Gaston Savoi, government employees and a number of companies was adjourned to August 1 by the Pietermaritzburg Regional Court yesterday.

On that day indictments will be served on the accused and the state is hoping that a date for the multi-million rand tender fraud and corruption case to go to the high court will be set.

Savoi appeared calm and relaxed, as he always does.

There was confusion during the opening of yesterday’s court session as some of the accused and a legal representative were absent without an explanation.

State prosecutor Mncedisi Dunywa told the court that businessmen Ansano Romani and Donald Keith Miller were not present in court and that accused 14, a law firm, Kuboni & Shezi (now Kuboni Inc.), was not represented.

When presiding magistrate Chris van Vuuren demanded to know why the law firm was not represented, one of the defence team’s members explained that its previous representative was an advocate Madlala.

Van Vuuren put it to the defence that Madlala should have been in court to give reasons for withdrawing from representing the accused.

The court adjourned for a short while amid confusion.

After the adjournment prosecutor Dunywa indicated that a Ms Ndlovu, who was present in court, would appear for accused 14.

The adjournment to August 1 will be the final one, Dunywa said.

He said bail will be extended for all the accused, and agreed to an application by advocate Sandile Kuboni (accused 6) to relax bail conditions as the accused is a practising advocate.

Dunywa warned Kuboni not to leave the country.

“The state will release documents to the accused after it has viewed them for any possible privileged information that might jeopardise the state’s case.

“These documents are an integral part of the state case so the accused will get them when they are ready,” Dunywa said.

“The state does not oppose the relaxation of the bail conditions for accused number 6 but he shouldn’t leave the republic,” Dunywa added.

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