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Mmabotse Mothiba, Chairperson of the Women Taking Back Safety Movement and Desiree van der Walt, Chairperson of the DA Women’s Network (DAWN) say they are happy that justice will be served and are looking forward to the trial.

Public outcry: Judge denies bail

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Two of the four accused in the murder of Lizette and Hettie Deacon, Casper Mudau and Sophie Mmako were denied bail by the Polokwane Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday.
Mmako’s bail application relates how she is the sole breadwinner in her family and did not pose a flight risk as she permanently resides in Polokwane.
She mentions that she has no passport and thus would not flee the country.
The prosecution however countered this by indicating that Mmako had submitted three residential addresses which was an indication that she was constantly moving around.
Mudau, on the other hand also mentioned that he had a child to take care of, and despite not being a South African citizen, the mother and his child were South African citizens which would prompt him to stay. His defence attorney told the court that he had lost his immigration documents, and had been in the process of retrieving them from the Department of Home Affairs.
This was refuted by the prosecutor who told the court that Home Affairs had no record of Mudau ever being in the country.
Both accused told the court that they would be able to pay R1 000 bail.
Magistrate, Janine Ungerer based her decision to deny bail on the public outcry surrounding the case and the protestors who without fail attend the court appearances.
She said the nature and seriousness of the case also had an effect on her ruling.
She mentioned that both are flight risks and they have been remanded in custody until 30 November to allow for further investigations and trial.
Mmabotse Mothiba, Chairperson of the Women Taking Back Safety Movement says they are happy that justice will be served and are looking forward to the trial.
“It is comforting to know that our noise has made an impact. We will continue to give our support to all women who find themselves in such situations. We don’t want to become a reactionary group, but we want to be known for being proactive.”
She adds the movement will be offering women classes on safety and teaching them how to take care of themselves.
“We don’t want to be seen as vulnerable women. We have strength inside each of us, all we have to do is reach out to it. No woman must be submissive to abuse and allow a man to do as he wishes. We want to live in peace, not in pieces.”
Desiree van der Walt, Chairperson of the DA Women’s Network (DAWN) says she is pleased that bail was denied for the two accused. “They must be prosecuted to the strictest part of law. It should be noted that public outcry played a role in this judgment.”

Story: Umpha Manenzhe