An urgent application earlier yesterday against Justice and Correctional Services Minister Michael Masutha had sought to ask that his re-arrest in February be reviewed and set aside. The court ordered his immediate release.
Correctional Services spokesperson Singabakho Nxumalo was not aware of the order when the Pretoria News contacted him, but by later in the day confirmed that there was an order for Motsamai’s immediate release.
A spokesperson for the military veterans, Patrick Maroka, late yesterday told the Pretoria News Motsamai was indeed due to be released, but said they were still busy with paperwork.
Scores of military veterans broke out in jubilation outside the Gauteng High Court, Pretoria.
“We are delighted and over the moon. This is what we wanted from the start. He was unfairly rearrested for no reason,” Maroka said. He and other military veterans went to the Boksburg prison to ensure that Motsamai was released and to welcome him back. He said they were prepared to sleep there until he was freed.
Maroka and his comrades caused drama at court last month as they kept members of the public and the legal fraternity hostage inside the court for about half an hour. They were upset that an urgent application concerning Motsamai’s release did not proceed at the time.
Members of a police task team had to be called in to defuse the situation, as the military veterans blocked the entrance and the exit to the court.
They wanted answers as to why the urgent application did not go ahead. The police and court officials had to address them inside an empty court to explain the situation to them and that the case was to be heard at a later stage.
In January last year Struggle hero Motsamai was freed on parole after serving 27 years for killing a white traffic officer in Rustenburg.
However, he was back behind bars after his parole was revoked in February this year for violating his parole conditions, which included house arrest. At the time Motsamai was in the building of the Department of Military Veterans. Maroka said he was there on military veterans business. “They had no business to re-arrest him. He did nothing wrong,” he said.