The three men arrested in connection with the murder of Hillary Gardee are expected to appear on Thursday before the Nelspruit Magistrate’s Court in Mpumalanga.
Sipho Lawrence Mkhatshwa, 39, Philemon Mhlabunzima Lukhele, 47, and Albert Gama, 52, will make their second court appearance since they were arrested in May.
The trio faces charges of conspiracy to commit murder, murder, kidnapping, rape, possession of an unlicensed firearm, possession of ammunition and defeating the ends of justice.
Gardee – the daughter of former EFF secretary-general and attorney, Godrich Gardee – was abducted on 29 April and her body was found along Lydenburg Road in the Sabie area outside Mbombela. She was 28 years old.
During the suspect’s last court appearance last month, Lukhele and Gama abandoned their bail application, and the matter was postponed to 9 June for further investigation.
Mkhatshwa’s lawyers quit
Last Friday, Mkhatshwa was in court for his bail hearing, however, his lawyers withdrew from representing him during proceedings for his bail application.
Mkhatshwa’s legal representatives told Magistrate Eddie Hall they could not represent him because of a conflict of interest that was not disclosed in court.
The Gardee family and the leadership of the EFF were expected to be present in court on Thursday when the suspects appear.
Compiled by Thapelo Lekabe