Julius Malema Land Invasion Court Case: The land invasion trial against EFF leader Julius Malema has been postponed to Thursday 6 July by the Newcastle Magistrate Court.
Malema made a brief court appearance at the Magistrate Court on Tuesday where the trial was scheduled to hold.
His lawyer, Tumi Mokoena requested a postponement, pending the outcome of a High Court application on the same matter.
Mokoena also pointed out during the brief appearance that the defence only received the docket for today’s matter in May and not in February as earlier promised by the NPA.
After listening to Mokoena, Magistrate Theunis Christiaan Lotter Colditz agreed to postpone the matter to allow Malema to file his application.
“The matter has been postponed until July 6, pending the filing of your application, and should the papers be filed and you do not appear; as per the agreement then the matter will be postponed to September 2017,” Magistrate Colditz ruled.
Malema is facing common law charges of incitement to commit a crime (land invasion) due to an alleged ‘hate speech’ which the State says, contravenes the Section 1(1) read with Section 2(1) of the Trespass Act. Act 6 of 1959 as amended by the Criminal Law Amendment Act 59 of 1983. He publicly made the speeches in 2014 and June 2016 respectively.
In 2014, Malema told EFF’s elective conference in Bloemfontein that land is essential and must be occupied because it belongs to indigenous blacks.
“We are going to occupy the unoccupied land because we need the land. For us to eat‚ we must have the land. For us to work‚ we must have the land… I come from Seshego. If there is unoccupied land‚ we will go and occupy the land with my branch. You must go and do the same in the branch where you come from,” he said.
In June 2016, during the 61st Freedom Charter celebration, he also urged EFF’s supporters in Newcastle, in the northern KwaZulu-Natal, to take over unoccupied land because it belongs to the country’s black African majority.
After his brief appearing at the Newcastle Magistrate’s Court in November 2016, Malema stepped outside the court and preached land invasion to his supporters [again].to “occupy the land because they have failed to give you the land”.
“Occupy the land because they have failed to give you the land. If it means going to prison for telling you to take the land, so be it. I am not scared of prison because of the land question, but I am scared of prison if I go to prison for corruption. I don’t want to go to prison for corruption, but I want to go to prison for the land,” he said.
Malema’s legal team, today, disputed the constitutionality of the Riotous Assembly Act. The EFF also accused the State of using ‘apartheid era laws’ to attack its opponents.
Speaking outside the court, Malema vowed to use the Freedom Charter to defend his statements.
He said: “It’s not me inventing new things … that’s what the struggle has been about. I will repeat what the generations before me said … I will use Madiba and Tambo before and after (im)prison(ment) on the radical interpretation of the Freedom Charter. Not the sweetheart approach to soothe the exaggerated feelings of white people.”
He also slammed the NPA wasting time and resources on the matter. To him, “these resources could be spent fighting serious crime.”