Nine more military veterans get bail after ministers’ ‘hostage drama’
The remaining nine former military struggle veterans who allegedly held defence minister Thandi Modise and two other ministers “hostage” last week were granted bail on Friday.
They were released on bail of R500 each.
“In the interest of justice the court has to give judgment now,” magistrate Bheki Ntshingila said before giving his judgment.
“Taking into account the circumstances of the accused, despite that a few are working, the court doesn’t believe bail should be set at more than R500.”
Eleven of the veterans initially appeared in the Kgosi Mampuru correctional services court in Pretoria for their bail application on Friday.
When the matter proceeded, two of the accused were immediately granted bail of R500.
The remaining nine had to make special bail applications because they had previous convictions.
Modise, her deputy Thabang Makwetla and minister in the presidency Mondli Gungubele were allegedly prevented from leaving a meeting at a hotel in Tshwane. Police intervened after veterans barricaded the doors with chairs and refused to allow the three to leave.
The Sunday Times reported their demands included the payment of R4.2m to each of 9,000 veterans at a total cost of more than R37bn.
The police initially arrested 56 people, of whom three were released after they were identified as hotel staff members.
Would you like to comment on this article or view other readers' comments? Register (it’s quick and free) or sign in now.
Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.