Malema corruption trial postponed

Magistrate Jenine Unger on Tuesday remanded the matter to next month after a request for a change in defence counsel for Kagisho Dichabe – one of Malema's corruption co-accused – was effected.

Both face charges related to the irregular awarding of a R52-million Limpopo provincial tender to Malema's On-Point Engineering, in which his Ratanang Family trust was an indirect shareholder.

Former league spokesperson Magdalene Moonsamy and several other office bearers of the now dissolved youth body were present in court alongside members of Malema's family and businessman Kenny Kunene.

Malema left court swiftly after the postponement, raising a clenched fist to his supporters but saying nothing.

"We want a trial date asap and we will attempt to make sure the state does not drag its feet in this regard," Tumi Mokwena, Malema's attorney said outside court.

Mokwena suggested the matter will be moved to the North Gauteng High Court at the next Polokwane magistrate's court appearance.

Other charges
Malema also faces charges of tax evasion to the tune of R16-million after it was revealed that he was linked to companies that obtained other lucrative contracts from the Limpopo government.

The South African Revenue Service has since applied to have Malema sequestrated in an attempt to recoup monies owed to it.

He last appeared in court relating to the fraud charges in November after his expulsion from the ANC was finalised in April last year.

Malema and his spokesperson Floyd Shivambu were both found guilty of bringing the ANC into disrepute by unfavourably comparing the leadership of President Jacob Zuma and his predecessor Thabo Mbeki.

Since his political demise the youth league's executive was disbanded by the ANC and the youth body is currently being led by an interim committee appointed by the ruling party.

A smattering of the controversial former youth league leader's supporters remained outside court after the hearing and declared their everlasting support for Malema.

"We support Julius Malema like we supported Nelson Mandela. He is being persecuted and will be our future president," Abner Maahlo said outside court.

"I don't care if any of the things they are saying is true. Juju will change this country for the better."

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Nickolaus Bauer
Nickolaus Bauer is the Mail & Guardian's jack of all trades news reporter that chases down stories ranging from politics and sports to big business and social justice. Armed with an iPad, SLR camera, camcorder and dictaphone, he aims to fight ignorance and pessimism through written words, photographs and videos. He believes South Africa could be the greatest country in the world if only her citizens would give her a chance to flourish instead of dwell on the negativity. When he's not begging his sub-editors for an extra twenty minutes after deadline, he's also known to dabble in the occasional poignant column that will leave you mulling around in the depths of your psyche. The quintessential workaholic, you can also catch him doing sports on the weekday breakfast show on SAfm and presenting the SAfm Sports Special over the weekend.

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