Hasn\’t South Africa changed?

And for the better:

Patrick Ndlovu, who was 15 at the time of the killing, confessed his role in the crime to police but a lack of forensic evidence and a failure by detectives to treat him as a minor saw a judge rule in his favour.

However a second man, farm worker Chris Mahlangu, 29, was found guilty of murder, attempted robbery and housebreaking.

During the day, as the verdict was read out at a court in the farming town of Ventersdorp, there were clashes between hundreds of uniform-clad white supremacist groups and local supporters of the two defendants which were broken up by riot police wielding batons and shields.

Mr Terreblanche rose to prominence in the 1980s with angry speeches calling for a separate Boer nation. He was beaten to death with a machete and an iron bar in the bedroom of his farmhouse in April 2010, shortly before South Africa hosted the World Cup. Following his death, Mr Ndlovu and Mr Mahlangu handed themselves in to police. Mr Terreblanche was found lying on his bed, with deep wounds to his head and body. His trousers were undone and his genitals exposed and blood covered the walls and floors of the room.

Mr Mahlangu claimed that he had killed Mr Terreblanche in self-defence after the rightwinger sexually assaulted him.

Imagine: this actually led to a trial! And, incredibly, an examination of the evidence, real, proper due process and, and how they would have laughed only three decades ago, an aquittal! Of a black farm boy!

South Africa ain\’t perfect: nowhere is of course. But it\’s certainly possible to say that the place is getting better, in one dimension at least, isn\’t it?

17 thoughts on “Hasn\’t South Africa changed?”

  1. So 2 men were involved in a murder. One was found guilty, the other got off on a technicality. Very Western justice.

  2. @GOM & JuliaM

    not sure why your nose is out of joint. doesnt the article state there was a lack of forensic evidence against Ndlovu? should he go down anyway?

  3. Oh No!–a charge of racism from a leftist. That’s the end of you Julia.

    The “rightwinger” (that makes killing him ok doesn’t it)supposedly invites two young black males to his home and despite being a known heterosexual, fat and elderly decides to sexually assault one of them?

    I suppose the fact that one of them was convicted is something. The one who got away on a technicality admitted his guilt.

    Lets hope the US courts will show the same concern for justice when Mr Zimmerman comes to trial.

    And as to your question Tim–no SA has not changed for the better overall. There is slightly less oppression (so far)if you are black but the country is going the same way as Zimbabwe . What the future holds under rapist and songster (“Bring me my machine gun”) Jacob Zuma’s rule is cloudy indeed.

  4. “Oh No!–a charge of racism from a leftist. That’s the end of you Julia.”

    Doubtful, even from a competent Leftist (there are a few, though like pandas, they breed poorly)… 😉

  5. So Much For Subtlety

    I think the question is larger than just this trial. Not that I believe for one second the fat boer tried to sexually assault anyone. The question has to be asked if the murder and rape rate has gone up. Are more people being murdered and raped now than in the past.

    I would think so, given South Africa’s almost unbelievable crime rate it would be hard not to. But perhaps they did not count crimes properly in the old days. So on the one hand, lynching of young Black men by the police is probably down (I would not bet money on it though), while on the other hand the murder of White farmers is up. And the rape of Black women. A sensible conclusion requires putting numbers on both sides.

    In the meantime, the ANC is insisting that the right to human dignity means they have the right to send thugs to destroy an art work of the President with his dick hanging out. Yes, this is going to end well isn’t it?

  6. Worth reflecting on what “got away on a technicality” means – i.e. “the state attempted to cheat and lie in order to deprive someone of their liberty, but was prevented”. Anyone who would do anything other than celebrate such a result is a cunt, irrespective of how dreadful the person involved is.

  7. “Worth reflecting on what “got away on a technicality” means – i.e. “the state attempted to cheat and lie in order to deprive someone of their liberty, but was prevented”. Anyone who would do anything other than celebrate such a result is a cunt, irrespective of how dreadful the person involved is.”

    I would celebrate anyone getting off any charge provided either :

    1-I believe the person to be innocent of an act of real wrongdoing–murder, rape, theft or:

    2-The person is on an evil “charge” eg free speech being branded as “hate speech” by leftists. I would prefer these latter charges thrown out by juries as a challenge to such laws but if the only way an unjust conviction could be avoided is on a technicality then so be it.

    None of that applies here. The second youth admitted his guilt (lets assume, since the wicked white cops are now under black control, that he was not beaten or coerced to such an admission–a dubious assumption but I’m sure some contributers here would agree with it). He IS a murderer but TPTB are not up to proving the case. If they can’t prove it he should walk –and be protected be double jeopardy from any re-trial.

    I see no connection, in this case at least, with the state attempting to cheat and lie and the accquital of this youth. The state more often than not does cheat and lie about everything but I don’t see what that has to do with this case unless you are suggesting the ANC framed the defendants.


  8. Might be worth reading the report from the South African press, rather than the Telegraph’s paraphrase and blog commenters’ conjecture. I should’ve done so in the first place.

    The blood patterns where Terreblanche was found showed that Ndlovu couldn’t have been in the room at the time of the stabbing. Which is why he was acquitted.

    The sexual assault accusation was made by Mahlangu (not Ndlovu), fairly late in the trial process, in a desperate attempt to get him off; it was rightly laughed out of court and he was convicted.

    So the ‘technicality’ here is that Ndlovu was innocent. Actually, I say the Telegraph’s ‘paraphrase’ above, that should be ‘outright lie’ – Ndlovu wasn’t acquitted for a lack of forensic evidence, he was acquitted because of forensic evidence which showed he didn’t do it.

    (North West Province law presumably doesn’t recognise joint enterprise in murder cases, being descended from Dutch custom rather than English common law)

  9. Mr Ecks:
    a) the police say someone has confessed to a murder.
    b) the forensic evidence shows that they didn’t do it.

    I’m inclined to take that as “state attempting to cheat and lie”, either about the confession or by forcing the confession.

    And while I’m sure the South African police are less awful than they were 30 years ago, I’m equally sure that plenty of police forces worldwide are also less awful than that, and nonetheless contain elements who have no problem in extorting fake confessions by beating, torture, lies, bribery or some combination of the four.

  10. Original sorce material is always preferable. If the evidence is on his side then I accept he is innocent and apologise to him via the aether for whatever that is worth.

    As for your last paragraph I agree that all police forces indulge and the British force is well up on the list.

  11. I didn’t accuse anyone of racism. I don’t presume to know why you, JuliaM and Mr Ecks, write the things you do. But you might want to ask yourselves what it is that made you so eager to believe the worst of Patrick Ndlovu without bothering to find out the facts.

  12. Zimbabwe, famed for its justice system that pays attention to the evidence and acquits people who the police have brought to trial.

    Can we have some more intelligent trolls please? Between Arnald and Paddy, the standard of trolling here appears to have gone way downhill.

  13. “johnb, did you miss the bit about the acquitted man admitting his guilt as per Mr Ecks’ comment?”

    So the police deny a fifteen-year-old legal representation for an interrogation, during which he confesses – no chance of an unsafe conviction there!

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