Radio manup for rape
A SENIOR employee of the SABC in Limpopo appeared in court yesterday for the alleged rape of a minor.
Freddy Baloyi, a music compiler at the Polokwane-based Munghana Lonene FM, was arrested on Sunday on allegations that he had raped a 14-year-old girl.
The alleged victim is the daughter of Baloyi's neighbour in Seshego.
Baloyi made a brief appearance in court, where his case was postponed to April 13 for a formal bail application.
Magistrate Nkateko Mabobo remanded the 50-year-old Baloyi in custody until his next court appearance - despite attempts by defence lawyer Sam Mpati to convince the court that Baloyi was a public figure known to millions of radio listeners.
This was after prosecutor Mary Motswetsi asked that the matter be postponed for seven days to allow the investigating officer time to gather more information relating to the alleged crime.
Mpati challenged this, arguing that it was only after the court provided "convincing reasons" that a postponement could be granted.
The lawyer also told the court that the investigating officer, known only as Inspector Lathani, had completed the investigations into the matter and was comfortable with R2000 bail being set for his client.
"After checking with the investigating officer on the matter (at hand) I came to a conclusion that there is no material evidence that is outstanding," Mpati said.
But Motswetsi argued that it was too soon to complete investigations since there would also be a need to take blood samples for a forensic investigation.
The magistrate declined to grant bail to Baloyi and postponed the case.
But she warned the prosecution that if the investigating officer failed to bring all the relevant information needed for the case at the next court date the matter would be immediately proceeded with.
The radio station is not new to being in the spotlight - for all the wrong reasons.
Three years ago one of its popular presenters was arrested for allegedly killing a pastor and throwing his body into a river outside Polokwane.
The case has since been withdrawn due to a lack of evidence.
In 2002 another presenter, Roderick Chauke, was shot dead by security guards while allegedly stealing bricks at a brick-manufacturing company near Polokwane.