Presiding Officer in the Senzo Meyiwa trial, Judge Tshifhiwa Maumela has ruled that Netflix production company Ten10 Films can continue to be part of court proceedings.
Legal representatives of accused number 1 to 4 in the Senzo Meyiwa trial raised their concerns regarding the attendance of Ten10 Films which produced the docu-series Senzo: Murder of a Soccer Star for Netflix.
WHY DID DEFENCE LAWYERS WANTS TEN10 FILMS OUT OF COURT?
Advocate Teffo who represents four of the accused in the trial said there’s a difference between a media house and a production house.
He argued that Ten10 Films is attending the court proceedings not for public interest but for their company to continue profiting from Meyiwa’s death.
“Ten10Films/Netflix are benefitting from the death of Senzo Meyiwa. They are exposing our witnesses to intimidation. It has never happened in the history of our country that a documentary is filmed even before the court proceedings have started.”Malesela Teffo
JUDGE RULES ON ‘NETFLIX PRESENCE IN COURT
On Monday morning before the cross-examination of the State’s first witness Sergeant held a very long discussion in the chambers which delayed the case.
Judge Maumela revealed that amongst some of the requests he heard was that the presence of the media is making some uncomfortable.
“One of the lawyers said even when they consult with their clients cameras zoom in and it is starting to become uncomfortable,” Tshifhiwa said.
“We are running an open trial in a democratic society where the implements that satisfy the desires of public interest come generally recognised and one of those implements which is most important is the media who are at liberty to even do more.Judge Tshifhiwa Maumela
Tshifhiwa said flighting a documentary before the trial began is not necessarily part of the main reason behind the trial.
“I cannot order Ten10 Films to vacate the courtroom. The court is not ordering anyone out who applied to be part of the court proceedings. Whoever has an issue with can take it up with the correct authorities so it can receive proper attention.”Judge Thsifhiwa Maumela