ANCYL leader on 2nd rape charge

A second rape charge has been laid against the Eastern Cape ANC Youth League provincial task team leader that was arrested last week for allegedly raping a woman believed to be working as a prostitute.

This seemingly caught his attorney Asanda Pakade by surprise, who told magistrate Joel Cesar in the East London Magistrate’s Court yesterday that his 38-year-old client was abandoning bail application “for now”.

The prominent suspect, who cannot be named until he pleads in court, was arrested after he allegedly assaulted and raped a 28-year-old woman last Thursday.

“Your worship, the suspect was ready to proceed with his bail application but there have been further developments which caught us by surprise.

“At this particular moment we cannot proceed with the bail application,” he said. While no explanation was given in open court as to what the new developments were, Cambridge police spokesman Captain Mluleki Mbi told the Daily Dispatch that another rape charge had been laid against the Mdantsane man.

Mbi said the new rape charge was laid yesterday. “He has been charged and will appear in court tomorrow,” Mbi said yesterday.

The suspect remained seated with his head bent down until his appearance was over, before being ushered back to the holding cells.

Cesar said the suspect would be remanded in custody while further investigations into the case continued. The mood inside the packed court gallery was tense as Sex Workers Education and Advocacy Taskforce (Sweat) members sat on one side while ANCYL supporters sat on the other.

Sweat human rights defender Monalisa Ngqisha said they were pleased by the outcome of the court appearance.

“We were expecting this outcome due to the criminal offences that have been [allegedly] committed by the suspect. If he’s still inside [jail], it means a lot to us because it means a lot of lives out there will be saved from violence.”

ANCYL supporters could be heard mumbling in disappointment over the verdict.

Youth League PTT spokeswoman Ntombikayise Mnyengeza told the Dispatch that until the courts found the suspect guilty, the leaguers would continue to support him.

“We respect the decision of the court. We will allow the law to take its course as we take the violence against women very seriously.”

The suspect was remanded in custody and will be back in the dock today for the new rape charge, while he will appear again on July 9 for the initial charge. —