The Western Cape Director of Public Prosecutions decided this week that prosecution in the infamous Plettenberg Bay Sedition case will not be instituted due to the following reasons:
- The allegations are vague.
- There’s no substantive evidence.
- Do not meet the description of the alleged offences (sedition and public violence).
- There is not a reasonable prospect of a successful prosecution.
According to our law Sedition is committed when a number of people gather together with the intention of defying, challenging, subverting or assailing the authority of the state. All that is required is the intention to defy or subvert the authority of the state in some way. The prosecution must prove that an accused intended defiance or subversion and that this intention was shared by others.
Public violence consists of the unlawful and intentional commission, together with a number of people, of an act/s which assume serious dimensions and which are intended forcibly to disturb public peace and tranquillity or to invade the rights of others.
The sworn affidavits submitted by two formers leaders of the group who intended making Bitou ungovernable contained inter alia the following information:
- This campaign commenced with protest marches under the banner of SANCO.
- Part of this campaign consisted furthermore in the unlawful and organised invasion of Council land.
- These invasions were repelled by Court orders obtained by the Council in the Eastern Circuit Local Division of the High Court of South Africa.
- When the unlawful land invasion was stopped this was succeeded by again orchestrated and organised stoning of Councillors, Council property and Council personnel.
- Support for these unlawful activities have been drummed up by the organisers on the strength of false and malicious rumours being spread in the community accusing the Council of a lack of service delivery and the councillors of ineptitude and corruption.
- Since May 2007 the unlawful acts, however, became far more serious and ominous.
- Various prominent members of the ANC houses was burned down.
- Lulama Mvimbi was attacked and his car was stoned.
- Various cars and assets were damaged or destroyed.
- Brummer was a councilor as well as Memory Booysen and they were at risk and were not to be seen with us.
- Brummer and Booysen was the link between us and the other sections.
- The aim was through disrupted campaigns and civil unrest to make the town ungovernable.
- Brummer was running the administration of the campaign with me. I used to write letters in his house and send emails from his computer.
- Memory was organising the funding for these groups with Brummer and they were all times fully aware and part of all the strategies of civil unrest in order to make the town ungovernable.
The NPA, before reaching the decision not to prosecute, declined to accept documentary proof of all the funders of this campaign from the investigating officer. Instead, he was relieved from the investigation and ordered to hand in the docket.
The NPA also declined to receive any further submissions or take any further affidavits from witnesses about the actions.
They also decided not to transfer the matter to the specialized branch within the NPA who deals exclusively with sedition and similar types of crimes.
The DA is not going to investigate the matter internally and no Commission of Inquiry is considered by the Western Cape Government.
The NPA’s mission and vision according to their website is: Justice in our society, so that people can live in freedom and security. Guided by the Constitution, we in the National Prosecuting Authority ensure justice for the victims of crime by prosecuting without fear, favour and prejudice and by working with our partners and the public to solve and prevent crime.