On 14th April 2022 Jan was travelling in his privately recorded conveyance through the small town of Montagu, encountering yet another checkpoint by Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) agents. Many years into the ongoing cat & mouse game, the agents for the corporation and the people on the road have come to know each other, especially when living in certain districts.
On some days the RTMC agents simply smile and don’t seem to have problem with RGH, on other occasions they blindly follow a letter titled “Legal Opinion Republic of Good Hope Vehicle Licencing” circulating among them since 2018 and have nothing better to do than arrest RGH members and charge them with fraud.
The 14th April was one of the latter occasions, although it was probably one of the friendliest and formal arrests in history. RTMC agent Baadtjies openly admitting to Jan that he felt uncomfortable doing this, but he had no other choice, which is not true, because he does have the discretion, even granted to him by the very National Road Traffic Act (NRTA) he is enforcing.
On that day Jan didn’t mind spending 3 hours at the Montagu police station, speaking to a number of peace officers and other RTMC agents, explaining in detail (again), why RGH was declared in the first place. A complete recording can be found here.
The 3 hour fun filled session at the police ended with the unlawful confiscation of private property, i.e. RGH record disc, travel card and number plates, and an invitation to the Magistrates’ Court four months later, on 6th September 2022.
On 15th June 2022 Jan sent an email to the Montagu court manager asking for the prosecutor’s contact details to forward relevant files, documents and information pertaining to the subject matter, as well as the Swellendam court to keep them equally informed, since another RGH member just had a similar experience there. As often with government offices, the emails bounced.
On 6th September Jan made his way to the Montagu court to meet new court employees, first public prosecutor Prinsloo at his office, for a 30 minute chat. This was probably some of the longest time any RSA court official at least listened to what we have to say, he had also obtained a copy of the above “legal opinion” letter, some kind of preparation or indication the court at least did some investigation, unlike many others before.
The conversation stalled a few times in the usual merry-go-round fashion, same old stale arguments, that the RSA constitution act 108 of 1996 automatically applies to all and sundry, whether autographed, contractually accepted or not and anything beyond that question is a of philosophical nature and not for a court of law to discuss. Or, people simply cannot govern and declare themselves independent from the state, whatever we say, do, draft, file, serve or proclaim, according to Prinsloo we remain citizens aka subjects to their system for life.
He is obviously just doing his job in the capacity of a public prosecutor (for a private company), his mandate dictates defending the state, although, he, like many others admitted quietly that the system is broken or settling the national debt should be a priority; i’m not sure if he relates the illogical statutory system to the financial debt of any nation though, how the legal and financial system have controlled the world for centuries now.
After the conversation at Prinsloo’s office, Jan made a quick visit in court to see magistrate van Deventer and arrange for a trial date. Unfortunately the Montagu court is very booked according to van Deventer and the next available date was the 17th January 2023.
This is the 4th time RGH is asked to return for a trial, exactly what we want, to table all the accumulated issues from the last 7 years, but as evident from the other incident reports, every time the matter was struck off the roll on the day of a promised trial. The magistrates on duty might have been acting on instructions. Only once did RGH have a trial, see Hylton case or Wilderness incident, but until today, RSA and its corporate agencies do not want to know about it, acknowledge or appeal the matter.
That’s it for now, we will add to the story, incident or case as it unfolds, since a trial was guaranteed, it would great to have a number of RGH people and supporters visiting the Montagu court on 17th January 2023. Jan will ask 2 key witnesses to take the stand, as well as question RTMC agent Baadtjies. There is of course the possibility the Montagu court will receive the same instruction from some higher and hidden office and strike the matter off the roll on the day.
One thing is clear and guaranteed though, we will not go away, ongoing intimidation, threats, possible conviction or not. This is our time, not only for the people of RGH.
17th January 2023, the day of trial, judgement day, upon arrival Jan is asked into the prosecutor’s office, and immediately informed by Prinsloo, “I’ve got good news”, only that his good news is bad news for Jan, who, contrary to most accused, having done something wrong, actually wants a trial, something the RSA court officials struggle to comprehend to this day.
Prinsloo is quick to inform Jan that the charges have been dropped, because Baadtjies no longer works for the RTMC and moved to Cape Town (200km away), according to the investigating SAPS officer who attempted to serve the subpoena, which under normal (and legal) circumstances is no reason to not to appear and testify in court, one would think.
It turns out, listen to the audio, the reason for Prinsloo to drop the charges and strike the matter off the roll with no future prosecution, simply relates to the value of the subject matter, or in other words, our case won’t generate enough money for the court company. According to Prinsloo, a fraud charge not exceeding R3000, isn’t worth their time, which is probably the maximum fine they could’ve imposed on Jan, further, since Baadtjies now lives outside the district, the state would have to reimburse him for travel, food and accommodation, if subpoenaed to court.
More interestingly, although only Prinsloo’s opinion and private conviction, there is no option to live outside their statutory system, however draconian, unjust or unlawful it is, just like the hunger games, you are born into one of the many districts in the colony, subject to its rules and regulations until you die… He, like many RSA employees before, can only suggest registering a political party, the only legal possibility inside their system to facilitate a change.
At least this time the state is obliged to restore private RGH property, which is only the second time in RSA vs. RGH history. Further, Prinsloo endorsed the charge sheet, at least some form of proof in writing or testimony of a failed state for Jan to carry on him, in case of future encounters requiring documentation.
Unfortunately the game of thrones and stones continues, effectively there is no difference to medieval times, according to Prinsloo, no-one in government, i.e. traffic, transport, treasury, etc, is ever going to speak to us, hear any of our questions or seek remedy for a peaceful coexistence, just like in 1450AD, if you had any reservations or criticism involving the king, royal houses, the church or feudal overlords, the only response wasn’t dialogue, but punishment, intimidation, or threats of incarceration and possible torture.
Just register your vehicle, pay your token percentage to the most fraudulent system ever in the history of mankind and all will be well.
Justin, who was invited to be a witness in Jan’s case, travelling all the way from the Eastern Cape on the 17th, made a phone call to ex-RTMC agent Baddtjies, confirming his resignation from the corporation, as well as the above mentioned costs for the state, should they want him to testify. He also disclosed his lack of knowledge regarding RGH or common law, not entirely opposing it though. The best Baadtjies could suggest was to schedule another meeting with the district traffic chief John Carolissen, who in turn could refer RGH to the director of traffic in Cape Town, now Farrel Payne.
This is nothing new, back in 2015, Jan met with John at his office for a friendly meeting, who could not make a determination on the status of RGH, thus passing on contact details for the director of traffic in Cape Town, a meeting was arranged and set down in 2017, then cancelled in a last minute fashion by Kyle Reinecke, the in-house advocate and deputy director general for transport in the Western Cape.
The path of the activist certainly ain’t the path of least resistance, to be continued…