Lungisa to have urgent bail application heard in court on Friday

2018-05-24 20:24
Andile Lungisa. (Norhi Lungisa)

Andile Lungisa. (Norhi Lungisa)

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An urgent bail application brought by ANC Eastern Cape heavyweight Andile Lungisa will be heard in the Port Elizabeth Magistrates Court on Friday.

Lungisa was sentenced to an effective two year sentence for assault with the intent to cause grievous bodily harm, for smashing a glass jug over the head of former member of the mayoral committee Rano Kayser, during a Nelson Mandela Bay council meeting in October 2016.

His new defence team, Alwyn Griebenouw and Advocate Alfonso Hattingh, filed a petition to the Eastern Cape High Court in Grahamstown on Thursday morning and submitted the bail application at the same time, on the grounds of the petition being filed.

READ: Andile Lungisa gets 2 years in jail for assault

There was a lot of frantic activity at the court on Thursday afternoon as arrangements were made to hear the matter. The defense were adamant that the application was to be heard at 14:00, but prosecutor Wayne Ludick was involved with another case.

After a lot of back and forth, Lungisa, smartly dressed and wearing shackles, made a brief appearance before Magistrate Morne Cannon.

Chief prosecutor Clive Killian appeared in place of Ludick.

Cannon said the matter had only been brought to his attention late on Wednesday and he had only received the defense's papers at lunchtime on Thursday.

Hattingh acknowledged the short notice arrangements and said the State and the defence were in agreement for the matter to be heard on Friday morning.

Cannon then instructed correctional service personnel to ensure that Lungisa was at court by 8.30 on Friday so that the application could be heard.

Court then adjourned.

A large group of family, friends and political supporters gathered at the court ahead of the application being heard.

Outside several branded ANC vehicles were seen and a sound system had even been set up, playing music for supporters dressed in ANC regalia.

READ: ANC Eastern Cape heavyweight Andile Lungisa found guilty of assault

A large group of supporters, including fellow ANC councillors who had been part of Thursday morning's collapsed council meeting, Deputy Speaker of the provincial legislature Mlibo Qoboshiyane, ANC stalwart Mike Xego and ANC regional secretary Themba Xathula also gathered inside the court building.

The substantial group, who waited in the corridors for the case to start, were repeatedly asked to keep quiet. The number of supporters inside the court was later reduced after consulting with court security and police, with preference given to Lungisa's family and senior political leaders.

Qoboshiyane, who also acted in the role of the family spokesperson, said they were there to show support for Lungisa.

Speaking outside court afterwards, Qoboshiyane said Lungisa was not a flight risk. He said it was also important that justice was also seen as restorative and called on supporters to return to court from 08:00.

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