The South African
Malawi’s Information Minister says his government have not yet received any communication from Pretoria regarding an extradition request for for self-proclaimed Prophet, Shepherd Bushiri.
Bushiri confirmed on Facebook that he and his wife had fled to his home country of Malawi after fearing for their safety, adding that he was skeptical that he would be afforded a fair trial while laying out a series of demands to be met before he returns to South Africa.
Minister Gospel Kazako called on South Africa to make a formal request for Bushiri’s extradition.
“We don’t know how he got into Malawi. You must know he was living in South Africa. He started his journey from South Africa. You also have to be asking the South African authorities how he managed to come into Malawi. We do not know.”
Minister of Justice comments on possible Bushiri extradition
The Malawi Minister also told eNCA they had “no involvement” in assisting Bushiri to skip the country.
Nevertheless, a diplomatic storm is brewing between Pretoria and Lilongwe after Bushiri jumped bail which coincided with Malawi’s President Lazarus Chakwera visit to South Africa for talks with President Cyril Ramaphosa.
Kazako’s denial echoed that of his president who “categorically refuted allegations that he gave Prophet Bushiri a lift on his plane which departed South Africa” on 13 November 2020.
Bushiri’s slick escape from SA has left reportedly left Ramaphosa fuming and law enforcement agencies red-faced.
THE SLEEK SHEPHERD
Bushiri, meanwhile is adamant he’s not running away from his trial in South Africa.
The Hawks have confirmed that Bushiri failed to appear as required at a police station on Friday.
As part of the bail conditions for Bushiri and his wife, Mary, the couple have to appear at their nearest police station on Monday and Friday.
The couple, who fled to Malawi this week, are currently out on R200,000 bail.
They are fighting fraud, theft and money laundering charges in regards to an alleged investment scam which is said to have netted them R100m.
Bushiri announced his arrival in Malawi on Facebook on Saturday morning.
He says he’s in Malawi to seek intervention from his home country, less than a week after being granted bail which prohibits him and other co-accused from leaving the country.
Bushiri said he will only return to South Africa after five conditions are met.
His five demands to the South African government are:
The South African government should assure the couple of their safety and security if they return to the country.
Government should assure them that their bail would not be revoked, despite defying their bail conditions.
The police officers involved in investigating, arresting, and prosecuting the Bushiris should recuse themselves.
The South African government should ensure all complaints lodged and opened against the officers are investigated before proceeding with the case against them.
The South African government should appoint “independent and professional investigators, and prosecutors who should make independent decisions on the cases we are allegedly accused of.”
The smooth self-proclaimed prophet addressed his followers on Facebook.
He requested the government of Malawi to liaise with Pretoria to ensure that their demands are met.
“Once these five issues are met and I am assured of a fair, just and impartial trial, I am willing to avail myself before the South Africa justice system.”