Political party ActionSA has called for justice in the case of Nathaniel Julies, with the party stepping in to provide legal support to the family of the 16-year-old, who was allegedly killed by police officers in Eldorado Park last year.
This is after two of the accused in the murder case were granted by the South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg on Monday.
According to ActionSA, police officers – Sergeant Simon Scorpion Ndyalvane, 46, and Constable Caylene Whiteboy, 23, – were released on bail of R1,000 each.
The third suspect, Sergeant Vorster Netshiongolo, 37, was granted R10,000 bail in December last year.
‘Criminal justice system is letting our people down’
In light of the ruling on Monday, ActionSA raised its concern on the case dragging on for too long, saying “it is evident that the criminal justice system is letting our people down”
“While we continue to respect the rule of law, Monday’s court proceedings will do little to affirm the family’s and community’s faith in our justice system. Our communities have waited to see justice done for almost one full year. It is evident that the criminal justice system is letting our people down.
“In a climate where public confidence in our law enforcement authorities is at an all-time low, where those who are powerful or close to power, are quite literally seen getting away with murder, South Africans need to see justice carried out – whatever the court may ultimately determine that justice be.
“The prolonged and drawn-out legal process only serves to undermine that justice whilst also denying families the closure they desperately need,” ActionSA Gauteng Provincial Chairperson John Moodey said in a statement.
Moodey said the matter has prompted ActionSA to intervene, in an effort to provide legal support to Julies’ family and to ensure that the case was prosecuted properly.
“South Africans are correctly gatvol of government incompetence, the glaring lack of care, and the tardy pace by which criminal matters are prosecuted. They are gatvol at not seeing justice done in their lives, whereas they can see the country being set ablaze in support of one powerful man,” he said.
Julies, who had down syndrome, was fatally shot on 26 August 2020 in Eldorado Park.
The murder resulted in intense social unrest in the neighbourhood, with residents calling for a complete overhaul of policing in the area. Stun grenades and rubber bullets had to be used to disperse angry crowds.
The trial has since been set down for 4 October to 29 October.
The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) has completed its investigation and the indictment has close to 50 witnesses.
Some of the witnesses include police officers from the Eldorado Park police station and medical practitioners who treated Julies in his last moments at Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital.