Sunday, June 16, 2024

Kgosi Kgafela suffers another blow

Bakgatla royal family and their tribesmen accused of flogging innocent persons in the Kgatleng district suffered another blow on Tuesday when Village Regional Magistrate Barnabas Nyamazabo turned down their application to have their case referred to the High Court on constitutional grounds.

The prosecution wants Kgosi Kgafela II and his co-accused remanded in custody pending trial.
The prosecution says floggings have continued in Kgatleng because Kgafela and his group enjoy freedom.

Delivering the ruling Nyamazabo maintained the defence argument to refer the matter to the High Court was frivolous and vexatious, insisting the Bogosi Act and the constitution explicitly define the duties and powers of Dikgosi which should not be abused.

“I find the referral application a waste of the court’s time as the laws of this country dictate the manner in which Dikgosi in their execution of powers as bestowed upon them by our existing laws are clearly defined,” he argued, insisting the Bogosi Act and the constitution “explicitly define the manner within the context of such powers could be executed which prohibit them to go beyond their powers as to even surpass the constitution.”

Nyamazabo indicated that any court in the country entrusted to carry judicial matters could expedite sufficiently the matter in hand instead of taking a long route to the High Court, adding it is a traditional standard that trial hearing precede punishment.

“It is clear and obvious that such a fundamental right was never afforded the complainants before the floggings were administered by the accused persons. Not Dikgosi, not even myself entrusted with so much powers could administer any form of punishment without a hearing as it would be against traditional judicial setting,” the magistrate noted.

Nyamazabo rubbished the Kalaeng versus State case cited by the defence to boost their argument, insisting the matter was superseded by the Petrus versus the state which was upheld by the high court in favour of the state.

Worse still the Kalaeng case was a civil matter as compared to Petrus which dovetails well with the Kgafela criminal case, he noted.

“The complainants of Kgafela case are adults well in their senses whom the court could not admit were flogged by the accused persons as parents as was then the case with Kalaeng,” he further noted.
Last week Kgafela suffered another blow as Nyamazabo, citing security reasons quashed the application for the case to be transferred to Mochudi.

Defence had argued the alleged crimes had occurred in Mochudi and besides the court would be extending the case to the appropriate audience.


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