Umrah pilgrims were left outraged when charges were withdrawn against Gaironiesa Foundation founder Shahied Stakala when he appeared before the Mitchell’s Plain magistrate’s court on Friday. The mu’tamireen hopelessly witnessed as the court withdrew all charges of fraud and theft under false pretences against Stakala. Apart from having his charges withdrawn, his passport was returned to him, which has instilled fear in the mu’tamireen.
“How can they give him his passport back? He has overseas investments. He’ll start running,” says one of the pilgrims, Zurina Isaacs.
The disgruntled group of pilgrams have threatened to sue the state if Stakala is pardoned of all charges pertaining to him.
“We will sue the state if all charges are dropped because this man took our money and lied to us about a subsidized umarah package,” says Isaacs.
Isaacs claims that Stakala is confident and smug that he will go uncharged.
“He thinks he is going to get away with what he has done because he is under the impression that no one comes to court to witness the progress of the case,” says Isaacs.
Charges were thrown out because due to the cost of court proceedings. Most of the aggrieved mu’tamireen cannot afford to hire legal representation.
“Most of the people he stole the money from are pensioners and they cannot afford to fork out another R1000. It’s just too much for them,” says Isaacs.
A date for Stakala to appear before the Commercial Court of Bellville is still to be announced. VOC