Monday, February 16, 2009

Blue Monday

The trial of the High Court judge accused of getting drunk, driving and then crashing his car into somebody's garden wall - a matter which has now been dragging on for more than two years now - was back in the Jozi Magistrate's Court today. So once again colleague Diva and I headed off early to court, but parted ways as she went to cover the sentencing of a woman convicted of beating her 2-year-old adopted daughter to death.
Court proceedings where I was began a mere 30 minutes late, and the investigating officer took the stand and told how much of a tough time she'd had identifying people who had been on the scene, tracing witnesses, convincing reluctant ones to speak and pacifying those who believed that testifying would put their lives in danger.
That done, and it was the defence advocate's turn to cross examine. Using the devious tactic of boring the prosecution to death, he proceeded to ask each question 45 times over. I was almost asleep when an exciting SMS came through from Diva - drama in the courtroom below!
I immediately dashed down to see if I could assist, and found Diva and our friend Fabulous Shoes (in strappy, navy, muscle crampingly-high stilettos) sitting outside collapsed with mirth. Angry family members of Child Basher had called on security to throw all journalists out of court. Security had refused, family members then felt humiliated and were now hiding out in the less-than-fresh public toilets. The drama had ended when Basher's sister tried to hit our photographer and he dodged.
So I missed out on the only action of the day and returned miserably to my drunk driving trial. I cheered up slightly when Fabulous Shoes decided to totter along with me. At least there was someone to chat to during the many smoke breaks. Another TV news reporter joined us and a radio reporter too.
By the end of the day the prosecutor had failed in his second application to have mystery witness Mrs X testify. Down, but not out, he promised that tomorrow morning he will be back to try a third angle.
I will find a reason NOT to be there!


  1. It sounds fantastically boring! Apart from the Basher business of course. This is the Motata drunk driving trial right?

  2. Yebo! Indeedio. It's not possible to find more boring.

  3. gripping... he stillettos i mean!