The South African Christian Ministers Council led a protest march outside the Itsoseng Magistrate’s Court in the North West province, where three suspects accused of killing Reverend Joseph Hollanders appeared briefly on Friday.
Council spokesperson, Pastor Moletsane Mosete, submitted a memorandum of grievances to the magistrate, demanding that the suspects be denied bail.
“We are not asking for much. We just want this court to mete out harsher sentences to those responsible for the death of the reverend," Mosete said.
He also raised concern that the community of Itsoseng seems to have lost faith in their local court after several disappointing cases.
"This court has lost so many cases that residents had invested so much in. So as the community we are not happy with the work done by the police when it comes to investigating. We would like for the suspects to be denied bail and rot in jail,” he said.
He added that as the clergy they were committed to providing spiritual support, including to those who break the law.
“We were sent by God to His people. Even those who break the law we have to pray for them to change their ways. We don’t have any fear and it will never be there, because we serve a powerful God,” said Mosete.
Magistrate Modiseemang Sere accepted the memorandum and explained the court process to the council.
“When it comes to issues of the memorandum I’m not the right person to respond. The case is not handled by the magistrate, it is handled by the prosecutor. A magistrate only becomes responsible for a case once it’s in court and listens to evidence,” said Sere.
Meanwhile the case against the three suspects Thabang Maseko, Mongezi Molefe and Mokete Tlhapi was postponed to the 30 January 2020 for formal bail application.