Two Port Alfred men accused of rape and murder forced to abandon bail bids

MARCH 23, 2016

A 43 year-old man, charged with raping and impregnating an 11 year-old girl, and a 28 year-old man, who allegedly murdered his girlfriend, both abandoned bail in the Port Alfred Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday after more than 150 community members, among them a local pastor and a political leader, protested outside the court demanding that the court refuses them bail.

Waving placard, some of which read, “Is being a woman a sin?” and “Respect God, Respect a human being”, the protesters called for stiffer sentences for perpetrators of crime, particularly those committed against women and children.

"In the rape case, it is alleged that the accused raped his girlfriend’s daughter on separate occasions in December 2015 and in February 2016 in Nemato. However, the crime was only discovered on 9 March, after it was discovered the girl was pregnant," described police spokesperson, Lieutenant Luvuyo Mjekula.

"The man charged with murder, Phumlani Mamani, allegedly stabbed his girlfriend to death in Nemato last week. The body of the 20 year-old woman was found near a stream on Sunday by a passerby."

It is alleged that the deceased had been walking with her friends the night before, Saturday, when they came across Mamani. He allegedly forced her to walk with him after which he allegedly stabbed one of her friends and threatened another, added Lt Mjekula.

The two suspects were arrested following the swift response of Nemato police members.

"Appearing immediately after one another, both men informed the court that they no longer had interest in applying for bail," said Lt Mjekula.

"Magistrate Xolile Dlulisa postponed both cases to 28 April 2016 for further investigation. The state was still awaiting DNA test results of both men."

Paul Rossouw prosecuted.

Outside court, Ndlambe municipality Speaker, Vivienne Maphaphu, who had joined the protest in support of the victims’ families, said she was encouraged by the local men and women who voiced their anger towards the accused.

“We also want to help rescue the perpetrators from themselves,” said Maphaphu.

Protest organizer, Thembani Mazana, said more community members would be mobilized when the duo appear on 28 April.

Port Alfred cluster commander, Colonel Lizette Zeelie commended the community members for their action and called for support for the young rape survivor.

Image: FED UP: Community activists from Port Alfred and Nemato protest outside the Port Alfred Magistrate’s Court today, calling for a murder accused and a man charged with rape to be refused bail by the court. Picture: Lt Luvuyo Mjekula.