Shembe trial postponed to next year

2012-09-28 21:06

Durban - The Shembe Church leadership battle was postponed to next year in the KwaZulu- Natal High Court on Friday.

The matter was postponed to 4 February.

The church, also known as the Nazareth Baptist Church, has been embroiled in a leadership battle since its leader Vimbeni Shembe died last year.

Vimbeni's son, Mduduzi, and cousin, Vela Shembe, both want to succeed Vimbeni.

Vela argues that Vimbeni appointed him as a successor in a will. He took the matter to court after failing to convince church elders that he was the rightful successor.

The court heard that handwriting experts still needed to file their reports.

Handwriting expert Jannie Bester and Leon Esterhuizen were expected to give evidence regarding a disputed signature on the deed of nomination of the late leader.

They were both going to be called to the stand by Vela's lawyers. Their reports had to be filed by the end of October.

Colonel Frik Landman, also a handwriting expert, would be called to the stand by Mduduzi's lawyer and was expected to tell the court that the signature on the deed of nomination was forged.

He had to file his response by 14 December.