Months after the #FeesMustFall protests, the case against one of the movement’s leader Mcebo Dlamini is still dragging on in the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court.
On Wednesday morning, Dlamini’s case was postponed to August 15 to give him time to instruct his new legal representation after his current lawyer withdrew from the matter.
Dlamini is in court facing multiple charges that include public violence, assault, theft and damage to property.
He was arrested at his University of Witwatersrand (Wits) residence in October last year during the protests for free education, which were carried out under the #FeesMustFall campaign.
He was initially denied bail by the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court but this decision was overturned by the Johannesburg High Court.
In his judgment, Judge Ratha Mokgoatlheng said the decision to deny Dlamini bail was not lawfully sound and said that the magistrate should have ordered the State to grant the defence access to the videos they said show Dlamini committing the alleged crimes.
Dlamini was then granted R 2 000.
Following his brief appearance, a calm Dlamini, dressed in his trademark white hemp with a picture of Steve Biko and blue jeans, cited the political pressure around his case as the reason his lawyer withdrew.
“My lawyers have raised serious uncomfortability, in that there’s too much political pressure [ around the case] and they can’t handle it.
“As much as they didn’t speak too much on it, there is pressure directed on my attorney.”
Despite this, Dlamini vowed to engage his lawyer and lobby him to return to the case, saying he understands the case well.
The State meanwhile, indicated that its investigation was complete and that it was ready to proceed with the matter.
The case continues.