Activists have expressed their outrage at another postponement, until March 2010, of the trial of nine men accused of killing 19 year old lesbian Zoliswa Nkonyana in 2006.
The case had re-started at the end of September after more than three years and 24 delays and postponements. The trial was then paused and postponed to 20 November and then 24 November after one of the accused was granted leave to attend his grandmother’s funeral in Durban.
However, the Western Cape 070707 End Hate Alliance said on Wednesday that it had learned that the accused’s attorney had “telephoned” the court to say that he was still delayed in Durban.
According to the group, the state’s case has now been derailed and the only available court dates that all six defence attorneys can agree on is March 2010.
The alliance said that it “strongly objects to this travesty of justice and will petition the Department of Public Prosecution (DPP) to intervene once again to ensure that the court roll is cleared for this trial to be concluded without undue delays or postponements.
“Delayed justice is no justice and we will not lose focus in holding all role-players in this trial accountable. Another year of delays and postponements will not be tolerated and will be vehemently challenged by the Alliance.”
The group said that it would hold the DPP accountable after the department committed itself to a speedy trail following a protest march in Cape Town in August.
Nkonyana was beaten, stoned and stabbed to death by a group of around 20 men in Khayelitsha in the Western Cape on 4 February 2006 – just meters from her home – reportedly for being a lesbian.