'No shenanigans': Govt reiterates it did not help Bushiris flee SA

The ‘Sunday Independent’ reported that Dirco assisted the fugitive couple to leave on the Malawian president’s plane with diplomatic passports, which contained false names and cosmetic facial changes.

FILE: The leaders of the Enlightened Christian Gathering Church, Mary Bushiri and Shepherd Bushiri. Picture: @psbushiri/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG - Government on Monday urged the public to believe that it did not assist self-proclaimed prophet, Shepherd Bushiri, and his wife to flee the country.

“I think we would like to urge South Africans must believe us. Once we are able to extradite the Bushiris, we will be able to share with South Africans what he tells us because he owes South Africans an explanation. There were no shenanigans,” said government spokesperson Phumla Williams.

The _Sunday Independent _reported that the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (Dirco) assisted the fugitive couple to leave on the Malawian president’s plane with diplomatic passports, which contained false names and cosmetic facial changes.

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Minister Naledi Pandor dismissed the claims on Sunday.

“Minister Pandor considers that these matters should be the subject of full and proper investigation by the responsible authorities rather than speculation that borders on irresponsible journalism,” said Dirco spokesperson Clayson Monyela in a statement.

He added: “Officials in Dirco work diligently and are entitled to do so without having their reputations tarnished by unnamed sources that hide in the shadows.”

The Bushiris fled South Africa more than a week ago after they were granted bail. They are charged with fraud, theft, and money laundering involving R102 million.

READ: Bushiris are guaranteed a fair trial in SA, says Minister Lamola

They handed themselves over to Malawian authorities and appeared in a local court in that country last week, where they were released from custody.

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