13 September 2017

Zimbabwe: Grace Mugabe a Typical Criminal, Says Afriforum

Photo: The Standard
Zimbabwe's first lady Grace Mugabe.

Grace Mugabe, who is accused of assaulting a young South African model, Gabriella Engels, has been accused by model's lawyers of acting like a typical criminal who blames the victim for their deeds.

Willie Spies, a spokesperson for AfriForum, representing in the matter is quoted by the South African media saying they were not deterred in the case against the First Lady after she claimed in her court papers that Engels was the actual aggressor.

Spies also warned politicians and Mugabe's friends not to involve themselves in the matter.

"I was not surprised to read that she (Mugabe) wrote the statement. And it doesn't change our case at all; for that very reason we believe it is so important that this matter should not be left to politicians to decide, should not be left to her friends to grant immunity," said Spies.

"It should be left to the courts to determine the truth and to make sure that the true events of that evening are determined and that justice runs its course," he said.

Early this week, Mugabe's representatives filed her court papers and are claiming that Engels was the actual aggressor, as she allegedly attacked the First Lady with a knife while drunk in an upmarket hotel room.

In the court papers, Mugabe said on August 13 she had gone to see her sons, Robert Jnr and Chatunga in a hotel suite because they were "in trouble with a drunken young woman".

"Upon her arrival Ms Engels, who was intoxicated, and unhinged, attacked Dr Grace Mugabe with a knife after she was asked to leave the room. Security was left with no option but to remove Ms Engels from the hotel suite," Mugabe's court papers read.

However, according to Engels, she was in a hotel room with Mugabe's two sons who are mutual friends, when the First Lady burst into the room and assaulted her.

Pictures circulating on social media show a bloody gash to Engel's forehead that she claims was a result of the encounter.

After the attack, Mugabe was granted diplomatic immunity and allowed to leave South Africa for Zimbabwe.

However, asked why Mugabe had been granted diplomatic immunity when she was facing serious charges, South Africa President Jacob Zuma said he could not explain why it was granted because he is not a lawyer and was not involved in the process.

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