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Woman behind Sphithiphithi Evaluator Twitter account granted bail

By Kailene Pillay Time of article published Aug 30, 2021

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The woman known as "Sphithiphithi Evaluator" on Twitter was granted R3 000 bail at the Germiston Magistrate’s Court on Monday afternoon.

The 36-year-old is accused of inciting violence on social media and other platforms under the username @_AfricanSoil during the recent violent unrest in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.

The media was not allowed to take photos of her or record court proceedings the woman’s attorneys requested to first study the media's applications.

The court heard that the woman was opposed to the media taking photographs or recording her in court.

Proceedings in the case which has garnered public interest kicked off at a snail pace and was marred by delays.

It only got underway after 2pm.

The delays were due to the fact that the woman was initially meant to appear at the Palm Ridge Magistrate’s Court but her matter was quickly moved to Germiston on Monday morning for "security reasons".

After a lengthy wait, her matter was finally called to court after lunch.

She was represented by attorney Leofi Leshabana who asked the court to release her with a warning as she could not afford the R3 000 bail due her catering business not doing well.

Leshabana said the bail amount would only punish her husband who was also left caring for their two young children since Majozi's arrest.

However, Magistrate Andre' Agenbag granted bail at R3 000, "taking into consideration the seriousness of the offence".

Her bail conditions include handing over her passport if she had one and notifying the Investigating officer should she leave the province.

The court also heard that the woman had no previous or pending convictions.

Magistrate Agenbag said he would hand down a judgement on the media's application during the woman’s next court appearance on October 18.

According to the Hawks, the woman has over 60 000 on Twitter.

She was arrested on Sunday during a search and seizure operation in Leondale, Gauteng which resulted in the confiscation of exhibits for further investigation.

She is facing charges of incitement to commit public violence.

According to the Hawks, members from Crime Against the State unit worked together with Crime Intelligence and arrested two suspects this weekend.

The other suspect was a 35-year-old man alleged to be involved in the incitement of public violence through social media and other platforms in KwaZulu-Natal.

According to the Hawks, as a result of his actions, the Brookside Mall in Pietermaritzburg was broken into and criminal activities such as theft of goods occurred.

During the incident, the mall was set alight by the suspects.

His appearance was held in-camera at the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court.

Political Bureau

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