South Africa News

Dr Nandipha Magudumana’s defence accuses investigating officer of xenophobia

Nandipha Magudumana’s legal counsel has accused the SA Police Service’s investigating officer, Lieutenant Colonel Tiohe Flyman, of xenophobia.

The State is relying on Flyman’s affidavit to keep Magudumana behind bars.

The Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court heard an application for Magudumana’s release on bail over two days this week.

The bail application is set to resume on Monday after a postponement.

Magudumana is facing multiple charges of fraud, violating a body, corruption, arson, assisting an inmate to escape, harbouring and concealing an escaped prisoner, and defeating the ends of justice.

During submissions to the court, Magudumana presented an affidavit in which she claimed her lover, Facebook rapist and murderer Thabo Bester, had threatened her, forced her into a car during their escape in March. They were ultimately captured in Arusha, Tanzania.

Magudumana also told the court that she would reside with her friend, Dr Michelle Chibaya, if she was granted bail. Chibaya is a naturalized South African who is originally from Zimbabwe.

In his opposing affidavit, also submitted to court, Flyman said Magudumana had strong links to Zimbabwe, as one of her gardeners-cum-security guards, who was also an accused in the case, was from Zimbabwe as well.

She also had a black rented Mercedes-Benz deserted in that country, which has yet to be returned. Flyman said Magudumana had demonstrated an ability to evade authorities, and releasing her on bail would be against the spirit of the criminal justice system.

Magudumana’s defence attorney, advocate Frans Dlamini, said Chibaya was a medical doctor who was in the country legally.

He took exception to Flyman’s affidavit and questioned why a member of the SAPS would make such remarks.

“What is wrong with that? She was naturalised in July 2018. There is nothing wrong with that it in terms of the law.

“The State wants to create something negative about Dr Chibaya. She is not in the country illegally. She has permanent residence, she is a doctor, she is an African person.

“The fact that she is referred to as ‘this person’ who has been residing since 2022, is concerning. It is inappropriate.

“The lieutenant colonel knows she is a doctor, but he says this person. It is inappropriate and disrespectful, and I am inclined to say it sounds very xenophobic,” said Dlamini.

AESTHETICS

On the matter of Magudumana supposedly being suspended from practising medicine since 2021 and not paying her fees, Dlamini said Magudumana ran Optimum Medical Aesthetics in Sandton, which she posited did not require her to be registered with the Health Professions Council of SA.

“She informs me that what she was doing had nothing to do with normal practice in carrying out work as a medical doctor. She was doing work outside the ambit of a medical doctor,” said Dlamini.

The bail application is expected to continue on Monday.

Other accused in the Bester matter are former G4S prison warder Senohe Matsoara, Zanda Moyo, Zolile Cornelius Sekeleni, former Integritron Integrated Solutions camera technician Teboho Lipholo, suspended G4S employee Tieho Frans Makhotsa, former G4S guard Buti Masukela, suspended G4S employee Natassja Jansen, and G4S employees Joel Makhetha, Moeketsi Ramolula, and Thabang Mier.

-IOL

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