Dudu Myeni trial will continue with or without lawyer for her, court rules
Durban - Former SAA chairperson Dudu Myeni has been given an ultimatum - retain her new legal counsel Adv Nqabayethu Buthelezi or face consequences of the trial continuing without any legal defence for her.
This was the ruling made by Judge Ronel Tolmay in the High Court in Pretoria on Thursday following a series of postponements on the trial due to the non-appearance of Myeni and the withdrawal of her legal representative.
The high court has battled since Monday this week to get Myeni’s version after it heard that two sets of law firms withdrew their legal services due to non-payment by Myeni.
During the proceedings on Thursday, Buthelezi told Judge Tolmay that he has accepted the legal brief and pledged to be present during the entire trial.
However, Adv Buthelezi wanted the Judge to grant a postponement of four months to allow him to familiarise with the contents of the case and to prepare for trial.
But the Judge and the applicants Outa and SAA Pilots Association had none of it. In their papers, they argued that they filed papers to declare Myeni a delinquent director in 2017 and Myeni was informed about the trial date in February 2018.
Due to the differences of opinion, the legal counsels were summoned to the Judge’s chambers to find an amicable settlement to the dispute.
In her final ruling, Judge Tolmay postponed the matter to October 21 for trial. Outa was also ordered to give Myeni a list of witnesses who are expected to give testimony against her. According to Judge Tolmay, it will allow Myeni’s legal team to prepare their defence properly.
Meanwhile, a Witbank-based law firm TC Pilusa Attorneys wrote to Outa on Wednesday asking it to cease in the civil matter against Myeni.
Lawyer Tumelo Pilusa said he was acting on the instructions of the Black Caucus, RET Champions; Amadela Ngokubona and Landless People’s Organisation of SA.
In his letter of demand, Pilusa wrote “that the personal prosecution of Ms Dudu Myeni should cease immediately. That the application brought against Ms Dudu Myeni withdrawn forthwith,” Pilusa said.
He said Outa did not confirm receipt to his letter of demand but said he would take further instructions from his client if Outa continues with the case against Myeni.