Judgment day for Malema in ‘shoot the boer’ trial

Judgment in the “shoot the boer” hate speech trial of ANC Youth League president Julius Malema was expected to be handed down in the South Gauteng High Court on Monday.

Youth league spokesperson Magdalene Moonsamy said on Monday morning that the league “was not commenting on anything”, after being asked if the league expected large numbers of supporters outside the court.

In April, the trial attracted large crowds of bystanders and Malema supporters but it was not certain if these supporters would be back outside court on Pritchard Street on Monday.

AfriForum Youth opened a civil case against Malema in the Equality Court after he sang the words dubul’ ibhunu, which translate to “shoot the boer”, at a number of ANCYL gatherings.

It believed the words were threatening to minorities and a threat to the safety of Afrikaners and farmers. The action was supported by farmers organisation Tau SA and the Association of Lawyers for Afrikaans.

The trial featured a number of witnesses who testified on the relevance of the song as part of the dismantling of apartheid and its place in history.

During his own testimony, Malema spoke of the youth league’s policy on nationalisation and on land reform.

Malema lost an earlier hate speech case in which he suggested the woman who accused President Jacob Zuma of rape had a “nice time”. He was fined R50 000.

Disciplinary hearing postponed
Meanwhile, the disciplinary hearing against Malema was postponed again to allow him to attend the court ruling on Monday.

Malema and five other league office-bearers have been brought before the ANC’s disciplinary committee.

The subject of the hearing includes comments they made about supporting the opposition in Botswana to enable a change of government. The ANC has charged that the six have brought the party into disrepute.

On Sunday, Malema lost another battle against the national disciplinary hearing after his application to keep details of the proceedings and decisions from the media.

Malema challenged the release of the full details of his previous application to have all charges against him dropped, saying it was in breach of the constitution.

The NDC ruled that it had not breached the ANC’s constitution because the findings made public on September 2 were not the final outcome of the hearing but merely related to a procedural matter.

It added that the decision to publish the findings was warranted because information leaked to the media might have created confusion and that Malema had not suffered prejudice.

Malema faces suspension or expulsion if he is found guilty. — Sapa

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