At a media briefing, Afrikaner lobby group AfriForum updated the media on various cases they were pursuing against Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema.
After AfriForum CEO Kallie Kriel spoke briefly on his belief that Malema was “above the law” and must be held accountable, he handed over to the lobby group’s head of private prosecutions, advocate Gerrie Nel, who detailed the organisation’s decision to try and prosecute Malema over the On Point Engineering scandal, which they alleged the NPA had refused to act on.
AfriForum’s head of safety, Ian Cameron, then took the microphone and gave details on the two other cases for which the lobby group planned to prosecute the leader of the red berets.
One involves the alleged assault of a police officer in April 2018 in an incident Cameron said was caught on CCTV cameras.
“The senior policeman filed a complaint with the police, but it received no police attention until AfriForum’s private prosecution unit inquired about the investigation in January 2019,” Cameron said in Afrikaans.
According to Cameron, at one of AfriForum’s inquiries about the case, the investigating officer indicated that the dossier had disappeared.
“The investigating officer’s excuse was that his colleague would hand it over to the prosecutor at his request, but could not now revoke the office or prosecutor,” said Cameron.
“Furthermore, the complainant was also informed by the investigating officer that he had already obtained warning statements from Malema and Ndlozi, while this was not the case.”
The third case AfriForum is charging Malema over involves his alleged firing of an assault rifle during the EFF’s fifth birthday celebrations.
“In August last year we filed complaints at the Lyttelton police station against Malema after he fired several shots with an assault rifle during the EFF’s five-year celebrations in Mdantsane in the Eastern Cape,” said Cameron. The EFF claimed at the time that it was a toy gun.
“The video clip was allegedly taken up by a police officer who also attempted to file video-based complaints against Malema. According to this person, however, the police refused to accept the charges,” Cameron alleges.
According to AfriForum, in December 2018 the SAPS registrar and national police commissioner General Khehla Sithole requested to conduct an investigation into Malema’s conduct.
READ MORE: Ndlozi says Malema fired a toy gun
“AfriForum has obtained various statements that indicate Malema’s violent nature, including his statement that he ‘will shoot to shoot to kill when it comes to his family’, which justifies an investigation by the registrar,” Cameron said.
“No feedback has been received from the NPA regarding the above case, which means that no trust can be placed in the NPA,” he continued.
“Letters were written to the NPA to follow up on these three issues. If the NPA is not prepared or able to prosecute Malema for these crimes, AfriForum’s private prosecution unit would like to take over the reins. It is unthinkable that an individual such as Malema gets away with so many legal violations.”
According to Nel, it is “a pity” that they have to “force the NPA to carry out its constitutional duty”.
“The NPA’s inability to make prosecution decisions, however, has a crippling effect on the criminal justice system and therefore we must intervene,” he said.
Attempts to contact both Malema and the NPA were not yet successful at the time of publication.
(Compiled by Daniel Friedman)