The Limpopo father and son who allegedly assaulted and set their dog on an employee, have appeared before the Groblersdal Magistrate's Court, facing charges of attempted murder.
Among those in the gallery were several government officials, including Police Minister Bheki Cele, Justice and Correctional Services Minister Ronald Lamola and Limpopo Premier Stan Mathabatha.
The case against Pieter Groenewald and his son Stephan was postponed to February 7, and the two were remanded in custody.
Tensions were high as representatives from different political parties and lobby organisations picketed outside the court.
Last week, there was a commotion outside the Groblersdal Magistrate's Court when a crowd arrived at court to support the Groenewalds.
The skirmishes outside the court happened when the crowd gathered to show support to the arrested father and son.
Pieter Groenewald, a security company owner, 63, and his son Stephan, 27, were arrested for assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm.
“According to the preliminary information, a 30-year-old victim was performing his guard duties at a network tower battery at Kwaggafontein, Mpumalanga province, when his supervisor paid an oversight visit,” said Limpopo provincial police spokesperson, Colonel Malesela Ledwaba.
The supervisor then accused the security guard of being intoxicated while on duty.
“As a result, he (supervisor) drove with him (security guard) to Groblersdal in Limpopo province to discuss the matter with the manager. Upon arrival, the two got into an argument that resulted in the manager hitting the victim with a hard object.”
“The security manager allegedly instructed a male relative to unleash their pet dog on the victim. The dog bit the victim on both legs.”
The security guard reported the incident to police, and a case of assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm was opened.
The two suspects, Piet Groenewald and his son Stephan, were then traced and arrested the following day.
A 25-year-old man who was part a group of demonstrators during the previous court appearance the Groenewalds is set to appear in the Groblersdal Magistrate’s Court.
Francois van der Merwe was arrested after he was part of the crowd which gathered at court in support of the Groenewald father and son.
Van der Merwe is facing charges of assault on police and interference with police in the execution of their duties.
“The matter (against Van der Merwe) is postponed to Thursday, February 1, 2024 for further investigation and formal bail application,” Ledwaba said previously.