News agency, Cape Town, South Africa
Monday June 26th 2017

Case against guards accused of assaulting pupil postponed

Pupils mass outside Chris Hani High in Makhaza, Khayelitsha yesterday, demanding their principal resign following one of the grade 12s being injured in a beating, allegedly at the hands of Bambanani volunteer security guards, on Thursday last week. Photo: Nombulelo Damba/WCN

Chris Hani high pupils have vociferously protested against the continued employment of their principal following a fellow pupil suffering spinal injuries due to an assault by Bambanani security guards. Photo: Nombulelo Damba/WCN

The case against two Bambanani volunteer security guards who allegedly severely injured a grade 12 pupil at Chris Hani High School a month ago was has been postponed by the Khayelitsha Magistrate’s Court on Thursday last week for further investigation.

The guards, Mzwanele Nombewu and Mawonga Mtyaphi stand accused of common assault for the incident involving grade 12 pupil Malibongwe Melani on September 22. Malibongwe was allegedly attacked after a “heated exchange” with the Bambanani guards following his refusal to allow them to search him for a cellphone before going to write an exam.

Consquently, Malibongwe has suffered injury to his spine, is unable to walk unaided and is not able to write his matric exams.

The incident took place on school premises and principal Madoda Mahlutshana has stated that he present during the attack, but later changed his version of events when addressing a parents meeting shortly after the incident.

Judge Mia Prag postponed the case yesterday as Mahlutshana, who was due to testify as an eye witness, was not present in court.

Accused Nombewu and Mtyaphi, who are out on bail, had to be escorted out of the court building by the police as about 500 Chris Hani pupils had gathered outside the court in protest.

Bambanani Khayelitsha coordinator Mncedisi Sithonga, said the matter was “getting out of hand”.

“Students and parents are threatning us. Mtyaphi is no longer staying in his house because the family (Melani’s) is threatening him.”

He said the company “had no choice” but to suspend Mtyaphi and Nombewu until the case was over.

“What I don’t understand is why the principal is working, this thing happened in front of him, because he is educated he can work and they are volunteers they can’t?” said Sithonga.

Outside court Nombewu said they had never been given a chance to tell their side of the story, which would show that they never attacked Malibongwe but stopped him from attacking the principal, whereupon Malibongwe fell and injured himself.

“The law must take its course,” said grade 12 pupil Mzukisi Mzendana, but added that Mahlutshana had to leave the school.

“Students are now scared of him because of what he did to Malibongwe.”

The case was set to resume on November 17. — Nombulelo Damba

 

Tags: Bambanani, Chris Hani High, Judge Mia Prag, Khayelitsha Magistrate's Court, Madoda Mahlutshana, Malibongwe Melani, Mncedisi Sithonga.

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