Malema, Ndlozi denied access to cemetery as vehicle not accredited, court told

Malema, Ndlozi denied access to cemetery as vehicle not accredited, court told

JOHANNESBURG - Lawyers for Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema and Member of Parliament Mbuyiseni Ndlozi have questioned why his clients were refused entry to the cemetery at Winnie Madikizela-Mandela's funeral if there was no list of official cars that were to be let in.

Malema and Ndlozi are in the Randburg Magistrates Court for their common assault case.

They are accused of assaulting a police officer at Madikizela-Mandela's funeral in 2018.

The pair have pleaded not guilty to the charge, but video footage was played in court showing Malema and Ndlozi fighting officials for obstructing their car from entering the cemetery.

Colonel Johannes Venter told the court that he was briefed only to allow the president and heads of state into the cemetery.

He insisted that the vehicle that Malema was travelling in did not have a sticker showing accreditation.

But Malema's lawyer, Laurence Hodes, has questioned how Venter made the decision to stop Malema's vehicle.

"You had no intelligence or information to tell you how many vehicles were coming," Hodes said.

Venter said in response: "Not at all, I did not know. They just informed us that the convoy would be from the stadium to the cemetery."

Hodes argued that Malema was a speaker at the funeral and had access to the cemetery.

Venter insists that even if Malema's vehicle had accreditation, he would not have let them in because he was not part of the official procession.

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