Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) national spokesperson Dr Mbuyiseni Ndlozi has questioned the presence of “an entire media contingency of senior journalists” at his and EFF leader Julius Malema’s assault case.
The two appeared at the Randburg Magistrate’s court on Wednesday for allegedly assaulting a policeman during the funeral of the late African National Congress (ANC) stalwart Winnie Madikizela-Mandela in 2018.
Shortly before the proceedings, Ndlozi posted a video of the journalists and National Prosecuting Authority’s (NPA) spokesperson Phindi Mjonondwane on Twitter.
‘A white policeman says he was pushed’
He accompanied it with the caption, “Must Watch: NPA deploys [a] senior spokesperson to a common assault case.
“Then, an entire media contingency of senior journalists just to cover a case [in which] a white policeman says he was pushed. Of all matters facing this country – white bodies matter! Then #DieBokkie #StrongerTogether.”
In the video, Ndlozi is also heard saying, “These are all senior journalists. When a white man says they were assaulted, this is what happens in South Africa.”
Speaking after the postponement, Malema denied assaulting the police officer, insisting that all they were “fighting” for was to enter the cemetery to bury “our mother.”
‘We had all the right to be there’
Malema said, “We had all the right to be there and he was not going to stop us. If we’re going to prison for having fought to bury Winnie Mandela, so be it.
“Let it be that we are being arrested for fighting to bury a revolutionary. I think it was a genuine cause. So if they want to do anything, they can do whatever they want to do.”
The case was postponed to March 2020 for trial. CCTV footage reportedly captured the incident and the officer involved filed a case against the two EFF leaders.
Lobby group AfriForum applied pressure on NPA to prosecute them. The latter eventually announced its decision to prosecute in September.
AfriForum has similarly pressured NPA to charge Malema for alleged corruption related to controversial Limpopo-based company On Point Engineering. NPA said last week it will prosecute On Point’s directors first and make a decision on Malema afterwards.
Other EFF leaders present in court on Wednesday were National Chairperson Dali Mpofu and Treasurer Hlengiwe Mkhize.