Cassanga family demand justice for “murdered” father, but justice delayed by Tembisa riots

The family of JJ Cassanga, a security guard who was allegedly murdered by striking Clover employees, has asked that the wheels of justice turn with urgency. But this week, it was not to be. The five men accused of murdering both Cassanga and Terence Tegg did not appear in the Thembisa Magistrates Court yesterday, because of the ongoing riots in the area. The matter was postponed to 8 August 2022.

Tegg was allegedly murdered at Clover’s facility in Olifantsfontein in February. Cassanga had been set upon by the violent mob, which severely assaulted him. He passed away from the injuries sustained in the attack in June.

AfriForum’s Private Prosecution Unit has been assisting Michele Bebbington, who was engaged to Tegg, as well as the Cassanga-family to ensure that the case receives the attention it deserves.

The attack left Cassanga with severe head trauma and brain injuries. In the months until his death, he suffered from seizures and headaches. He collapsed and died in his doctor’s consulting rooms from what is believed to have been a brain aneurysm.

His niece, Sofia Johannes, described Cassanga as a father-figure and a person whom her whole family looked up to. “I’m heartbroken and hurt, even though these people will pay for what they have done. They will be behind bars. But I will never be able to call my uncle and talk to him. They have taken somebody who is very special to us, and they have taken a father from his children who are still minors and they still need their father in their lives,” she says.

Johannes believes there should be no further delays in the case, adding that there is ample evidence available of the attacks on Tegg and Cassanga to prove the cases of murder. “Every evidence is there, so I expect that justice must be served and as much as it won’t bring JJ back, it will give us a sense of relief that the perpetrators are paying for their crimes.”

Johannes has thanked AfriForum’s Private Prosecution Unit for the ongoing support. “The day that JJ was attacked, to date, AfriForum has been involved. I. constantly get updates on what is happening, who was arrested, what happened in court and when the next court hearing is. We as a family really appreciate the efforts AfriForum is putting into this matter to ensure that justice is served.”

Adv. Gerrie Nel, head of AfriForum’s Private Prosecution Unit, says they will continue to monitor the case closely and provide the much-needed support and guidance to the affected families.

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