Protestors see bail for murder accused postponed

Riot Hlatshwayo

Riot Hlatshwayo

Mandla Mathebula, 22, accused of murdering his former girlfriend, Advice Mashaba, 21, and burying her in his policeman brother's back yard, showed no remorse during his bail application in the Mhala magistrates' court yesterday.

When the proceedings started, three hours later than scheduled, the magistrate warned restive members of the public in the the crowded courtroom to be silent.

Despite this warning, some people in the public gallery shouted that if Mathebula were granted bail he would be buried alive. Placards expressing these sentiments were displayed.

This prompted the magistrate to warn that he would order the police to arrest disruptive individuals in the court or have them removed from the court room.

During his bail application, Mathebula told the court that he was a third-year industrial engineering student at the Vaal University of Technology and that if he remained in custody he would not be able to register for this year's studies on February 5.

He said an interruption of his studies would jeopardise his prospects and for that reason he would not skip bail if it were granted.

Mathebula claimed that Mashaba had been his lover since 2000 and that he had last seen her when they had sex in her room at her parents' home in the early hours of December24.

He claimed that the police had taken him to Makweng police station, where prisoners stripped him and severely assaulted him.

He said the police blindfolded him and tortured him with electric cords.

Mathebula was remanded in custody pending the continuation of his bail application on Monday.