Bomb near Witbank court at Willem Ratte hearing

9kg fire extinguisher ‘made to look like a bomb’ found outside Witbank court where arrested ex-32nd Battallion commander Willem Ratte was scheduled to appear

Monday November 1 2010 9:45 – PRAAG reports that a “fake’ bomb was found in a rubbish bin at the entrance of the law-court of Witbank where the arrested former 32nd Battallion commander Willem Ratte and 9 co-arrested Afrikaners were scheduled to appear today. It’s unlikely that Afrikaners were responsible, writes Praag. The forced evacuation of the courtroom only caused a temporarily delay for Ratte’s bail application however – the badly-weakened Afrikaner was released on a mere R2,000 bail.

Ratte court appearance Witbank friends supporters Oct 11 2010 DAN ROODT PIC

PRAAG WRITES: “Due to the fact that all the appearances of these ten arrested people were attended mostly by Afrikaner supporters, (picture above of Witbank court at previous Ratte hearing)  it would be unlikely that the bomb would have been planted by Afrikaners’, writes PRAAG.

The story was confirmed by the SAPS – who said the court was barred and evacuated temporarily. SAPS spokesman Eddie Hall said a 9kg fire-extinguisher which ‘looked like a bomb’, with a pipe attached to batteries and a watch,’ was sent to the SAPS Pretoria forensics department for ‘further tests.’

PRAAG WRITES: “Instead the finger of suspicion points at the ANC-regime itself and possibly the national intelligence service – to disrupt Ratte’s appearance today. The expectation was that Ratte would be released from his illegal custody today because the state, after a full month of incarceration, still has not been able to formulate any charges against (the former 32nd Battallion commander).”

PRAAG saw the fake-bomb incident as ‘merely an attempt to keep Ratte in prison so that he can starve himself to death. He launched a hunger-strike shortly after his arrest and refused to accept any counsel from worried family and friends to start eating again. He says he’s innocent of any wrongdoing and the SAPS raid was carried out without any arrest warrants.”

Ratte was released on R 2,000.00 bail.  He was so weak that he was forced to apply for bail, said a friend. “It was against his belief to ask for bail, but now he had to do it.”

Ratte Willem court appearance friends Oct 25 2010 Witbank Picture above: Willem Ratte at his previous court appearance – weakened by a hunger-strike, he refuses advice from worried relatives and friends looking on from above, to start eating again. He’s protesting against the fact that he was arrested while totally innocent of any charges. The SAPS has held him incarcerated ever since his arrest on October 1 2010 – and has yet to formulate any charges against him or the other 9 Afrikaner men arrested with him.

BoerGenocideMuseumFarmEenzaamheid_Balmoral was raided by SAPS for 'dangerous arms caches'

About Adriana Stuijt
Retired South African-Dutch journalist formerly Sunday Times Johannesburg

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