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Beard wife breaks down in court

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Roedolf Viviers

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Rudolph Viviers allegedly mocked, then killed Mohammed Fazaaz Kazi. Photo: Bongiwe Mchunu

Krugersdorp - The widow of a Muslim man who was killed, allegedly in a fight about his beard, broke down in the Krugersdorp Regional Court on Thursday.

Sajidah Kazi started crying when the prosecution read out a statement detailing the injuries sustained by her husband Muhammad Fayaaz Kazi.

The court was told that Kazi's ears, eyes, nose and upper lip were injured. He also had a skull fracture and his pancreas was damaged.

Murder accused, Roedolf Viviers, 28, who was dressed in a grey and white striped shirt bowed his head when the court was told about the post mortem report.

He and another man, Zayne van Tonder, 33, allegedly made racist remarks to Kazi and his friend Anser Mahmood about their beards, at a Chicken Licken outlet in Magaliesburg on August 6, 2012.

An argument and a fight ensued. Kazi was severely beaten and died in hospital.

Charges against Van Tonder were later dropped and he was released.

Viviers is applying for bail.

Prosecutor Leshia Surendra cross-examined lawyer Hendrick Nortjie on Thursday.

Nortjie maintained that his client was not the instigator of the fight which led to Kazi's death. “It was private defence,” said Nortjie.

Earlier, he told the court that Viviers' mother was fragile and that her medical condition was deteriorating because of the court case.

The elderly woman was being cared for by her niece in Durban.

“She needs oxygen and medication every day,” he said.

He claimed to communicate weekly with Viviers' family and his mother, who live in Durban.

Nortjie told the court the family was having financial difficulties and needed Viviers' to be released so he could provide for his mother.

He was asked why he had not provided an affidavit about the family's financial condition and the elderly woman's medical condition.

Surendra said if Viviers, 28, was released, his family would also have him to take care of, and that this would only add to its financial burden.

Nortjie argued that there was a job waiting for Viviers should he be released.

Magistrate Reginald Dama commented on Nortjie's statement: “He is very lucky.... He has a job waiting for him while others are struggling for employment.”

Nortjie could not confirm what salary or job title Viviers would hold. He said Viviers was not a flight risk. “He is a responsible person who has co-operated thus far.... He doesn't have anywhere else to go. He doesn't even have a passport.”

The matter continues. - Sapa


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