Reprinted from The Sowetan, by Linda Kea Moreotsene – 2020-12-19
The Free State High Court on Friday dismissed an application by one of the accused in the Brendin Horner murder case to appeal the refusal to grant him bail.
Sekwetje Mahlamba, 32, had brought his application to overturn the decision by Senekal Magistrate Deon van Rooyen to deny him bail on October 23, to the high court.
Van Rooyen had granted Mahlamba’s co-accused Sekola Matlaletsa a R5,000 bail, saying the state’s case against him was weak and that he showed exceptional circumstances.
On denying Mahlamba bail, Van Rooyen had said his girlfriend’s statement had cast suspicion on him.
In his application to the high court, Mahlamba argued that the magistrate had erred on a point of law in denying him bail.
The pair is accused of murdering 21-year-old Horner and robbing him of his cellphone and wallet on October 2. Horner’s body was found tied to a pole in a farm in Paul Roux, and had numerous stab wounds.
The case sparked riots in the small Free State town, and prompted President Cyril Ramaphosa to make an appeal to citizens to “resist attempts … to mobilise communities along racial lines”.
The case against Mahlamba and Matlaletsa was postponed to January 21 2021.