‘Project aimed to sink Mdluli’ – lawyer

FILE PICTURE: Former Crime Intelligence boss Richard Mdluli and his Legal representative Ike Motloung outside court on September 19, 2012 in Boksburg, South Africa, as Mdluli appears during the inquest into Oupa Ramogibe's death. (Photo by Gallo Images / Foto24 / Lucky Maibi)

Attorney Ike Motloung told the court the project targeting his client was called `Ulibambe Lingashoni`.

A lawyer representing former crime intelligence boss Richard Mdluli yesterday told the South Gauteng High Court sitting in Palm Ridge a project was started with the intention to bring his client down.

Mdluli and policeman Mthembeni Mthunzi face charges relating to the 1999 kidnapping and murder of Oupa Ramogile, who was married to Mdluli’s former lover, Tshidi Buthelezi. They are also accused of intimidation, assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm and defeating the ends of justice.

Attorney Ike Motloung told the court the project targeting his client was called Ulibambe Lingashoni, a Zulu saying meaning: “Do not let the sun go down.”

Motloung was posing questions to state witness and former investigating officer Colonel Kobus Roelofse during cross-examination. He did not provide further details of the alleged project.

“I put it to you that a project was declared against Mdluli. You gentlemen (including unnamed men) wanted to bring Mdluli down.”

“Are you referring to me, my lord? That’s not true,” said Roelofse.

Motloung also implied Roelofse did not act independently when he took over the investigation, saying he relied on information from people who were hostile to Mdluli when he took over the case in 2011.

Roelofse vehemently denied this. Motloung grilled Roelofse about the origins of the information that an unnamed member of the family of Mdluli’s former lover was assaulted.

Approached for comment, a relaxed Mdluli smiled and said: “Let us wait for the outcomes of the trial before we comment.” The trial continues on Monday.

– warren@citizen.co.za

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