Andile Lungisa granted bail, pending ConCourt application

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Andile Lungisa.
Andile Lungisa.
Luvuyo Mehlwana, News24

Nelson Mandela Bay ANC councillor and former ANC Youth League deputy president Andile Lungisa has been released on bail, pending his Constitutional Court challenge against his prison sentence for assault with the intent to cause grievous bodily harm.

In 2018, Lungisa was convicted and sentenced to three years in prison of which one year was suspended.

He was found guilty of smashing a glass jug on the head of DA councillor Rano Kayser during a scuffle in the council in 2016.

He previously appealed his conviction and sentence to the High Court but the appeal was dismissed. He then approached the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) to overturn the sentence.

The Eastern Cape High Court in Grahamstown granted Lungisa bail of R10 000 on Friday.

The court also attached the following conditions: 

Lungisa will have to remain at his residence until such time as his application for leave to appeal to the Constitutional Court has been determined. 

He has been ordered to hand over any travel documents by Wednesday, 30 September.

He must report to the Kabega Park police station on Mondays and Fridays. 

If Lungisa's Constitutional Court application is refused, he will have to present himself to the relevant authorities within 72 hours to continue serving his sentence. 

News24 reported on Friday that the country's top judges took offence to allegations of political interference at the SCA and the Eastern Cape High Court in its dealings with the Lungisa matter. 

READ: Andile Lungisa maintains innocence as he enters prison, hits out at judges

In a statement, resident of the SCA, Mandisa Maya, SCA judges and the judge president of the Eastern Cape Division of the High Court, Selby Mbenenge noted with consternation the remarks allegedly made by Lungisa inferring his case was not "fairly decided due to the political and familial affiliations of the judges' undue influence at the respective courts".

Spokesperson for RSA Judiciary, Nathi Mncube, said:

"These allusive and false remarks, which undermine the integrity of the judiciary and judicial independence and constitute contempt of court and crimen injuria offences, are reported to have been made when Mr Lungisa handed himself over to authorities at the North End Prison in Port Elizabeth to begin serving his two-year sentence following a conviction on charges of assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm."

Judges added that efforts to discredit the judiciary without proof should be condemned and that those who have credible evidence of corruption or undue influence within the judiciary should come forward, produce the said evidence and be willing to testify to it in a court of law or a commission of enquiry.

"Without evidence, such allegations cannot be investigated," Mncube added. 

The judges have also demanded that Lungisa retract the remarks. 

 

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