Petrus 'The General' Ndaba will remain behind bars after his bail application was denied by the Pretoria North Magistrate's Court. Picture: Oupa Mokoena/ANA Pictures
Pretoria - Petrus “The General” Ndaba, 55, will remain behind bars at Kgosi Mampuru Correctional Centre.

This comes after his bail application was denied by the Pretoria North Magistrate's Court on Friday.

He allegedly lured and defrauded 259 young prospective job seekers in a jobs-for-money scam at the SANDF. Charges against him include kidnapping, assault, fraud and crimen injuria.

State prosecutor advocate Ronnie Sibanda maintained Ndaba faced serious charges and had the capability to flee the country, while his defence advocate, Jurg Prinsloo, portrayed him as a victim of poor health with severe diabetes who needed special medical attention outside prison.

During the two days of the bail application, Ndaba displayed confidence and bravado, waving and smiling at supporters in the gallery. But on Friday he wore a sullen face and looked pitiful.

It emerged during the bail application that Ndaba was a former military private and had served prison time for murder.

He joined the then South African Defence Force in 1991. He was stationed at 115 South African Infantry Battalion in Pretoria, underwent basic military training and was made a private. 

He was arrested and charged with murder in 1993. He was tried in a civilian court, found guilty and sentenced to 10 years in jail.

The recruitment scam first became public knowledge when a group of people, aged between 18 and 30, were seen on the streets of the Akasia suburb Karen Park.

They had with them bags, blankets and other belongings and said they had been evicted from a house in the suburb because of unpaid rent. Local police then arrested Ndaba, who allegedly styles himself leader of Amabutho Royal Defence.

The victims were recruited mostly from KwaZulu-Natal and had reportedly paid R300 to R800 for registration, R1 800 for training, and R200 a month since last year.

Ndaba is alleged to have demanded payment for lodging from them as well. He promised them a salary of R13 000 a month and said they would be given the opportunity to study further.

The men and women shared a three-bedroomed house with one bathroom and used two wendy houses, with males and females sleeping together. 

Some slept in the kitchen, passages, dining room and lounge. They were subsequently taken to the Salvation Army for protection

Ndaba is due back at court on September 1.

Pretoria News