The ongoing judicial commission into Bakgatla ba Kgafela affairs has summoned Kgosi Nyalala pilane to appear before it and explain why he should be held in contempt.
Nyalala was summoned after failing to appear before the commission.
Among others the Commission was established to determine the relationship between Kgosikgolo Kgafela Kgafela II and his uncle Kgosi Nyalala Pilane and also the relationship between Moruleng and Mochudi.
The Commission further seeks to examine the financial flow of the R36 billion Bakgatla wealth that is largely platinum and gold resources, tourism and game ranches, communication which includes Siyaya television and the R400 million mall development in Moruleng which is essentially the spiritual capital of Bakgatla ba Kgafela. The commission also seeks to establish whether Kgafela Kgafela has the power of appointment of regents in Moruleng, and whether or not as paramount chief he alone can remove or install a regent. Amongst others the commission will deal with claims by Merafe Ramono, a practising attorney whose late father kgosi Tidimane had wanted to install and drape him with a leopard skin, a move that Kgosi Linchwe Kgafela moved swiftly to stop through the assistance of Kgosi Lucas Mangope and President Nelson Mandela. This led to the unceremonious removal of Tidimane in 1996 and the appointment of Nyalala Pilane by Kgosi Linchwe II.
Last week, the commission ordered that Nyalala Pilane be summoned to appear physically at the commission, explain why he should not be held in contempt for failing to appear and furnish the commission with necessary documentation particularly those that speak to financial flow, and wage bill of his Traditional Council. The traditional Council is a body that runs financial affairs of the tribe. At the head of it sits Nyalala Pilane.
Judge Maluleke who heads the commission was visibly annoyed and made the order that shocked a fully packed commission largely by Nyalala Pilane supporters.
“The order compels Kgosi Pilane to appear here physically on Monday 11am, and to furnish this commission with necessary documents sought from him as far as September 2016. Pilane must explain why he should not be held in contempt the result of which is 3-6 months imprisonment,” Maluleke ordered.
However, in a twist Kgosi Kgafela ii asked the commission to forget about compliance on the side of Nyalala Pilane. He however was less punitive in his submission.
“Judge in every disease there is cause and symptoms. For us to settle this Bakgatla issue once and for all, let’s go to the cause. Kgosi Nyalala will not comply. Forget it sir. I have been dealing with kgosi Nyalala, and I have lived with it. What you seek to do now is what I have sought to do since 2011. I may not be very familiar with the laws here, but to imprison Nyalala may not be the solution, what we need is for him to appear here, here.”’ Kgafela said.
The judge made the unpopular order in order to move swift to meet the deadline of March 17th the date the commission is expected to complete its work as mandated by the North West Premier Suprah Mahumapelo.
This week, Advocate Sidney Pilane is expected to represent Bakgatla ba-Kgafela in the same commission to support Kgafela Kgafela’s bid to continue the generational authority that Mochudi has over Moruleng, otherwise known as Pilanesburg.
It appears Kgafela Kgafela supporters have been given a morale booster as buses have been assembled to leave Mochudi with hordes of people to witness a spectacle that reminds many of the 1996 episode which saw the defeat of Tidimane Pilane. In the meantime, Nyalala Pilane’s leading Advocate George Lebala has withdrawn citing a “bias” of the commission.