Court grants Patel R250 000 bail for ‘killing’ wife

Rameez Patel, the husband of the late Fatima Patel. Pic: Review Online

Rameez Patel, the husband of the late Fatima Patel. Pic: Review Online

Rameez Patel, charged for the murder of his wife Fatima has been granted R250 000 bail by the Polokwane Magistrates’ Court.

In addition, Patel has to report to the Westenburg Police Station three times a day while he is on bail. He is also not to leave his place of residence without written permission of the investigating officer, Constable David Nkuna, unless it is for the purpose of taking his son to school, going to work or reporting to the police station, Review Online reported.

Patel was accused of murdering his wife on April 10.

“We are happy that Rameez will be with the family today while still sadly missing and grieving Fatima’s absence,” said his parents Firoz and Mehjabeen Patel in a statement.

“Notable to the whole saga was the prevalence of democracy in our rainbow nation that gave everyone opportunities to express their support for Rameez and Fatima. We appreciate and thank all those on either side, as they were both on our side. After all, both remain our children, close to our hearts,” they said.

They firmly believed Rameez was innocent. “It was a blessing in disguise that the bail application was virtually conducted like a trial.”

They stated that, in their personal view, it was disappointing the legal system deviated from “bail application” to “virtually a trial”.

“Although we believe it helped everyone to clear their doubts, it delayed the release of Rameez, which was an unseen punishment to his three very young surviving children, who needed their father immediately when mom was not there.”

Magistrate Mohamed Shaik summarised the evidence before court and what happened during the lengthy hearing on Tuesday, and he said there were no signs of Patel trying to flee during the time he was not yet arrested. He said should Patel try to intimidate or try to talk to the witnesses that were to testify in the case, there would be remedies for that, and he could be incarcerated again.

Shaik dismissed Patel being a flight risk, as his family and children as well as business interests were in Polokwane. He set the amount for bail so high so as to make sure Patel would not want to forfeit the amount by fleeing, he said. He said there were no indications Patel would not comply with bail conditions. “Sometimes the public does not know a lot about the bail regime and legal implications.” Patel will appear in court on July 7.

Patel will live with his parents during his bail period. He is to refrain from contacting witnesses, the names of whom will be supplied to him by the court.

– Caxton News Service

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