17 August 2017

South Africa: Police Clarify Issues Around Alleged Sandton Assault

Photo: New Zimbabwe
President Robert Mugabe kissing his wife Grace (file photo).

The Ministry of Police on Wednesday clarified a number of issues around the confusion surrounding a prominent Zimbabwean woman.

This follows an assault case that was opened by a 20-year-old South African who alleges that she was assaulted by the woman at a hotel in Sandton in which she apparently sustained injuries to her face.

In a statement, the Police Ministry said the accused remains in the country - despite some media reports indicating that she left the country.

They confirmed that the suspect had arrangements acceptable to SAPS that she would present herself to the SAPS Police Station in Sandton on Tuesday at 10am.

The time scheduled was changed several times. By end of business Tuesday she had failed to present herself as arranged.

"Her attorneys and government of Zimbabwe representatives did arrive at the police station in Sandton for channels of cooperation."

The Ministry said the purpose of the arrangement was to obtain a warning statement and to obtain the suspects version if any.

However, according to the Ministry the suspect's lawyers and her government representatives made verbal representations to SAPS investigators that the suspect wished to invoke cover of diplomatic immunity.

"Subsequently, the Government of Zimbabwe has dispatched a diplomatic note verbale to the Department of International Relations and Cooperation invoking said Diplomatic Immunity cover."

The statement added that the suspect never left South Africa and was attending to private matters and participating in a SADC summit and Bi-lateral Diplomatic Meetings which are already underway in Pretoria.

"Discussions with the suspect's lawyers and the Zimbabwean High Commission representatives are taking place to make sure that the suspect is processed through the legal system," according to the statement.

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