thandi modise afriforum

Photo: Twitter / AfriForum

Thandi Modise maintains innocence in animal cruelty matter

Speaker of Parliament Thandi Modise is facing charges of animal cruelty in the Potchefstroom Regional Court in the North West.

thandi modise afriforum

Photo: Twitter / AfriForum

The Speaker of Parliament, Thandi Modise, has pleaded not guilty to six counts of animal cruelty in the Potchefstroom Regional Court in the North West on Tuesday 1 December.

Modise is being prosecuted by Afriforum’s Private Prosecution Unit led by Advocate Gerrie Nel on behalf of the National Council of Societies for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (NSPCA) regarding an incident that dates back to 2014. 


At the time, the NSPCA conducted an inspection of Modise’s farm near Potchefstroom and found the animals on the premises in a dire state.

Close to 80 of the animals had died from neglect, whilst tens more were severely malnourished. These animals included pigs, sheep, goats, chicken, and geese.

Modise has since the beginning maintained that she is not at fault, because a farm manager had been appointed to ensure the animals are fed and well taken care of, in her absence. 

READ: ‘Dishonourable speaker’? Arrest warrant issued for Thandi Modise

The case is expected to continue over the next two days. 

Modise was initially set to appear before the Potchefstroom Regional Court on 24 March 2020, but failed to. Her legal team alleged that this was due to a last-minute urgent meeting between herself and President Cyril Ramaphosa. After ruling that her reasons for her absence were insufficient, a warrant was issued for her arrest.

Afriforum is quoted as saying in a statement that “no-one is above the law, not even the Speaker of parliament. AfriForum’s Private Prosecution Unit is looking forward to finally begin with the hearing so that Modise can be held accountable for this barbarous case of animal cruelty”.