South Africa 28.11.2013 09:08 am

Hundreds support Malema ahead of court

FILE PICTURE: Julius Malema. Picture: Nyambeni Mandiwana

FILE PICTURE: Julius Malema. Picture: Nyambeni Mandiwana

Hundreds of EFF members gathered in the Polokwane police station foyer on Thursday to support their leader Julius Malema ahead of his court bid to have the charges against him dropped.

Malema’s supporters held placards and banners indicating which regions of the Economic Freedom Fighters they came from.

They also blew vuvuzelas and some waved knobkerries as they chanted songs against President Jacob Zuma.

“Muso wa Zuma reya o menola”, meaning “we will unseat Zuma’s government”, they sang.

Traffic was bumper to bumper, with streets around the court closed ahead of Malema’s appearance in the Polokwane Circuit of the High Court in Pretoria.

The expelled ANC Youth League president faces charges of fraud, corruption, money-laundering, and racketeering.

It is alleged that he made nearly R4 million from corrupt activities.

Malema is out on R10,000 bail. His four co-accused, who are his business associates, are out on bail of R40,000 each.

On Thursday, the EFF leader is expected to make representations to the judge in an attempt to have the charges against him dropped.

The State alleges that the five misrepresented themselves to the Limpopo roads and transport department, leading to a R52m contract being awarded to On-Point Engineering.

According to court papers, Malema had business ties with Lesiba Gwangwa, one of the co-accused and a director of On-Point Engineering.

Malema’s Ratanang Family Trust was an indirect shareholder in On-Point.

The department paid the company R43m. According to the charge sheet, Malema substantially benefited from this payment, using it to buy a farm and a Mercedes-Benz.

If the charges are not dropped, Malema’s trial would be heard from September 30 to October 31 next year.

– Sapa

 

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