Jean-Jacques Cornish

Furious crowd attacks photographers covering court-related violence

South Africa’s Police Minister Fikile Mbalula’s condemned attacks on media and public at a trial of two white farmers accused of killing a black youth they maintain they caught stealing sunflower seeds.

Mbalula says the country’s police aervice is monitoring the situation in Coligny northwest of Johannesburg.

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There’s been  a furious response to Pieter Doorewaard and Phillip Schutte being granted bail.

At least three houses in the North West town have been torched by angry community members.

The two men are accused of murdering a 16-year-old boy Motlhomola Moshoeu and then throwing  him out of a moving pick up truck.

The accused maintain the youth jumped from the truck while being taken to the police station.

Violent clashes erupted in the remote farming community after the accused were granted bail of 350  euros.

Residents of Coligny took to the streets after the court decision, burning down three white family homes.

A witness has said Mosheu, who died of a broken  neck, was deliberately thrown from the truck driven by the accused

At least two photographers were assaulted for taking pictures of the fires.

Magistrate Magaola Foso told a packed court room there’s no link between the witness evidence and accused.

He’s aware of the  tensions around the case but will not respond emotionally.

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Jean-Jacques Cornish is a journalist and broadcaster who has been involved in the media all his adult life.

Starting as a reporter on his hometown newspaper, he moved briefly to then Rhodesia before returning to South Africa to become a parliamentary correspondent with the South African Press Association. He was sent to London as Sapa’s London editor and also served as special correspondent to the United Nations. He joined the then Argus group in London as political correspondent.

Returning to South Africa after 12 years abroad, he was assistant editor on the Pretoria News for a decade before becoming editor of the Star and SA Times for five years.

Since 1999 he’s been an independent journalist writing and broadcasting – mainly about Africa – for Talk Radio 702 and 567 Cape
Talk, Radio France International, PressTV, Radio Live New Zealand, Business Day, Mail & Guardian, the BBC, Agence France Press,
Business in Africa, Leadership, India Today, the South African Institute for International Affairs and the Institute for Security Studies.

He has hosted current affairs talk shows on Talk Radio 702 and 567 Cape Talk. He appears as an African affairs pundit on SABC Africa and CNBC Africa.
He lectured in contemporary studies to journalism students at the Tshwane University of Technology and the University of Pretoria.

He speaks on African affairs to corporate and other audiences.
He has been officially invited as a journalist to more than 30 countries. He was the winner of the 2007 SADC award for radio journalism.

He’s been a member of the EISA team observing elections in Somaliland, Democratic Republic of Congo, Madagascar, Zimbabwe, Egypt and Tunsiai.

In October 2009 he headed a group of 39 African journalists to the 60th anniversary celebrations of the Peoples’ Republic of China.

In January 2010 he joined a rescue and paramedical team to earthquake struck Haiti.

He is immediate past president of the Alliance Francaise of Pretoria.

Jean-Jacques is a director of Giant Media. The company was given access to Nelson Mandela in his retirement years until 2009.
He is co-producer of the hour-long documentary Mandela at 90 that was broadcast on BBC in January 2009.