Lamola: Govt won’t hesitate using SADC relationship to extradite Bushiris

The two are out on bail and were supposed to report to authorities on Friday but absconded defying their bail conditions.

FILE: Justice and Correctional Services Minister Ronald Lamola addresses the media in Pretoria during a virtual Cabinet briefing on 6 August 2020. Picture: @GovernmentZA/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG - As authorities rush to track down fugitives Shepherd Bushiri and his wife Mary in Malawi, Justice Minister Ronald Lamola said government would not hesitate to use its Southern African Development Community (SADC) relationship with that country to extradite those running from justice.

The two are out on bail and were supposed to report to authorities on Friday but absconded defying their bail conditions.

Bushiri and his wife are accused of theft, fraud and money laundering in connection to a R100 million investment scheme.

Lamola said Malawi was a signatory of the SADC protocol and other legal instruments on extraditions.

He said government would not hesitate to invoke these provisions to assist law enforcement agencies extradite fugitives of justice.

Bushiri said he left the country on Wednesday, but this still had to be verified by law enforcement agencies investigating his fraud case.

Speaking to his supporters on social media, Bushiri now said he wanted his government to speak to their South African counterparts to handle the matter.

“We are communicating formally to the government of Malawi on Monday. My safety in South Africa is not okay.”

Bushiri is also begging the government here on home soil not to revoke his bail conditions.

HANDING THEMSELVES OVER TO AUTHORITIES

The couple said they would be handing themselves over to Malawian authorities on Monday after the fraud-accused couple fled South Africa.

Questions are now being raised by authorities here at home around exactly how Bushiri and his wife managed to skip the country.

Earlier this month the couple was granted R200,000 bail as the magistrate was convinced that they were not a flight risk.

WATCH: 'We stand by our mama and papa' - Bushiri’s supporters protest for his release

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