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MATSAPHA – Incarcerated Members of Parliament (MPs) Mduduzi Bacede Mabuza and Mthandeni Dube were yesterday reportedly assaulted in an ordeal that is said to have lasted for about 45 minutes.

According to impeccable sources, the legislators, with seven other inmates, were allegedly assaulted by officers from His Majesty’s Correctional Services (HMCS) yesterday at the crack of dawn, just before 6am. It was alleged that about 20 officers from the Rapid Response Unit, which is a para-military unit of HMCS, went to the cell occupied by the Hosea Constituency MP Mabuza and Ngwempisi Constituency MP Dube.
It was alleged that during the attack, the Correctional officers had their faces covered in balaclavas. Upon entry, it was alleged that the officers started assaulting the two legislators with open hand, fists, kicks and they also used spray guns.


As this was happening, the sources alleged that the Correctional officers were using expletives and also claiming that it was ‘an eye for an eye’.
Seeing this, it was said that the seven inmates occupying the same cell with the MPs, tried to intervene and questioned the violence. However, the intervention of the inmates supposedly drew the ire of the HMCS personnel as they supposedly started assaulting them as well. During the skirmish, it was alleged the law enforcers continued to use all sorts of missiles and assaulted all inmates in the cell.


The sources claimed that MP Dube was also pressed with a bed and against the wall such that he sustained an injury to his eye. On the other hand, it was purported that MP Mabuza was assaulted all over the body, in such a way that he bled profusely through his nose. Following the allegations of the assault of the legislators and the other inmates, their legal representative, Ben J. Simelane, went to the Matsapha Correctional Facility where the incident was said to have happened. He arrived at the Correctional Facility at about 11am to engage with his clients. Simelane confirmed the series of events as narrated to him by his clients when he went to see them. He said: “Dube was also pressed with a bed and against the wall - he sustained an injury to his eye. Mabuza was assaulted all over the body and even bled from the nose.”


The senior attorney said the other inmates also (allegedly) sustained injuries and were treated at the HMCS clinic. Simelane shared the names of the other inmates allegedly assaulted by the warders as well. The purported assault of the MPs and other inmates also drew the ire of social media as Senior Journalist and Editor of The Nation Magazine, Bheki Makhubu, in a comment regarding the violence in Correctional facilities, said: “The invasion of cells at night is done as a matter of course in our prisons. Why nobody has ever taken the prison authorities to court for this, completely escapes me.

“When I was told about it on arrival at Sidwashini, I sent a very clear message to the prison authorities that I would make a lot of noise for them if they ever did it to me. Imagine being stripped naked, slapped around in the dead of the night by a man young enough to be your son? (sic)” Makhubu said the assault of inmates horrified him by just merely thinking about it. Luckily for him, he said: “They got the message because throughout my time there, not a single cell was ever raided. However, two weeks after I’d left, they did just that, going back to what they knew best.” He recalled that on the afternoon he was released, one young inmate told a senior officer that; “Wahamba Makhubu, sinyile ngini, senitasishaya ngekutsandza kwenu,” which loosely meant that now that Makhubu has left, you will assault us anytime you want. Makhubu said the Correctional officer, the message was addressed to, did not respond. He said that young man would later tell him after his own release that they did just that (assault them).

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