Advocate Malesela Teffo, the lawyer representing four of the five accused men in the Senzo Meyiwa murder trial, has withdrawn from the case, saying he was harassed by the Judge and the state.
With no substantiated evidence, Teffo claimed a plan to harass him was hatched in the office of President Cyril Ramaphosa. It was this allegation which led advocate Teffo to step down counsel for the accused in the Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Tuesday.
The proceedings were adjourned when Teffo said he wanted to challenge the jurisdiction of the court saying the matter was supposed to be heard in Johannesburg High Court and not at Pretoria High Court.
However, on Tuesday morning, Teffo abandoned the application to challenge the matter of jurisdiction and told the court he would make presentations to the National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP) to have the charges against his clients dropped.
In the afternoon, Teffo took the court by surprise as the court was about to be adjourned and announced that he was withdrawing from the case.
“It is an opportune moment for me to inform this court that I am withdrawing,” Teffo told the court.
He said he was being harassed by the police, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) and the Judge.
“I came into this case knowing what will be the consequences. On 28 April when I was arrested in your court your lordship, that was a plan and the plan was hatched in the president’s office.
“I am labelled a problematic lawyer because I am disturbing that plan, the plan is that my clients should take responsibility of the murder of Senzo Meyiwa, despite the fact that they were innocent.”
Teffo asked to be excused and left the court before the proceedings were concluded for the day.