PRETORIA – Former Orlando Pirates ace and Bafana Bafana midfielder Andile Jali could wait for a full year before appearing in court to answer to charges of drunk driving after he was arrested by the Tshwane Metro Police Department (TMPD) at the weekend.
Jali, 28, was released on Sunday, after spending Saturday night behind bars at the Brooklyn police station.
Speaking to the African News Agency, TMPD spokesperson Senior Superintendent Isaac Mahamba declined to name the suspect by name, instead only referring to him as “a 28-year-old former Orlando Pirates player currently playing for the national soccer team”.
“He was released on R1,000 bail and the court date is 15 May 2019,” said the TMPD spokesperson.
Mahamba then explained the reason for the long wait before the soccer player's court appearance.
“When we arrest you, firstly we breathalyse you which gives us a reading. The reading tells us there is a possibility of alcohol in your system. Then we go and draw blood. After drawing that blood, we take it to the laboratory for evidence in court. The results may take up to a year,” said Mahamba.
“There is a possibility that the results may come earlier than that. If the results are out early, we might subpoena him so that he can appear in court and we will present that evidence in court. We need those results for us to go ahead with the court case.”
The Belgium-based Jali was arrested while driving his personalised “Jali 15 GP” white Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT in Hatfield, east of Pretoria CBD. He was in the company of a male friend.
On Sunday, Mahamba announced that the national soccer team player was among 15 people detained by the TMP in an extensive operation against drunk driving.
Mahamba said drunk driving was one of the major causes of fatal accidents on the capital city's roads.
“Any person found driving while intoxicated will be arrested. TMPD will continue to intensify these drunk driving operations; endangering innocent lives on our roads will not be tolerated,” said Mahamba.
“Motorists are encouraged to rather find alternative means of transport than to drink and drive. Well done to the officers for the outstanding arrests. No one is above the law.”
African News Agency (ANA)