Daily Maverick

AfriForum to privately prosecute Thandi Modise over animal cruelty

Prosecutor Gerrie Nel smiles during the murder trial of paralympian Oscar Pistorius at the High Court in Pretoria, South Africa, 08 July 2014. Pistorius is charged with murdering his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine's Day last year. The athlete claims he shot her by accident through the locked door of the toilet in his Pretoria home, thinking she was an intruder about to emerge and attack him.The State contends he killed her during an argument. The State would file its heads of argument on July 30, and the defence on August 4. Argument would then be heard in court on 7 and 8 August 2014. EPA/SIPHIWE SIBEKO / POOL

Lobby group AfriForum has announced that it will privately prosecute chairperson of the National Council of Provinces Thandi Modise in connection with animal cruelty at her farm.

AfriForum made the announcement on Thursday at their offices in Centurion, Gauteng.

In 2015, a protracted legal action was initiated after it emerged that animals had been starving on the multimillion-rand farm of chair Modise in 2014.

The farm, based in the North West town of Modderfontein, just outside Potchefstroom, was found littered with the carcasses of more than 50 dead pigs and other animals, including goats, sheep, geese, and ducks.

About 85 surviving animals were found eating the carcasses of those who had died.

Advocate Gerrie Nel said AfriForum was planning to prosecute Modise within the next three months. The case is expected to be heard in Potchefstroom.

The National Council of Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (NCSPCA) laid a complaint against Dr Sameer Abbas, with the South African Veterinary Council (SAVC) after he refused to provide evidence and reports around criminal charges against Modise.

The complaint was that of unprofessional conduct in terms of the rules of the SAVC. Abbas had taken various tissue samples from the animals, which were analysed, and also conducted post mortem procedures on the dead animals.

An independent disciplinary committee found Abbas guilty of two charges of contravening the SAVC rules, resulting in a six-month license suspension, which was in turn suspended for two years.

But Abbas appealed to the High Court which in turn ruled against him.

News24 reported last year that the Freedom Front Plus said Modise was a poor example for emerging black farmers and should be prosecuted for animal cruelty – something which the court said had a slim chance of success. DM

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