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STATE GETS ADVOCATE FOR BHANTSHANA CASE

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MBABANE – The State is instructing an advocate to oppose the bail application of Bhantshana Gwebu, the Chief Government Vehicle Inspector.


The State, which is represented by the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, is opposing a bail application filed by Gwebu who now wants to be released from custody pending the hearing of his matter on Monday.


The latest development is contained in a letter attached to the notice of intention to oppose filed by the Director of Public Prosecutions at the High Court yesterday.
“This letter serves to inform you that the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions will instruct an advocate to handle the matter of Vincent Vivian Bhantshana Gwebu.  The application for bail pending finalisation of the matter is opposed and necessary court processes have been filed,” reads part of the letter signed by Senior Crown Counsel Thabo Dlamini from the Chambers of the Director of Public Prosecutions.


The name of the advocate to be instructed was not mentioned in the letter that has been copied to the Registrar of the High Court and Gwebu’s lawyer Machawe Sithole from Dunseith Attorneys. Gwebu was arrested and charged by the Mbabane police on Monday morning after he was surrendered by his lawyer.
He appeared before Chief Justice Michael Ramodibedi in his chambers at the High Court.


Gwebu is facing a charge of contempt of court after he arrested and charged a driver of High Court Judge Esther Ota.
On Saturday the Chief Justice issued a warrant for apprehension after Gwebu arrested and charged the driver, Vusi Tsela, next to Sifundzani Primary School on Saturday.
Tsela had taken the judge to Sifundzani primary where she had gone to buy school uniform for her children.


The judge was present when Gwebu arrested and charged Tsela for the alleged abuse of the government vehicle.  Gwebu will spend the next seven days at the Sidwashini Correctional facility pending the hearing of his matter.


The driver and Judge Ota were travelling in a Mitsubishi Lancer registered GSD 028 JU when Gwebu pounced on them.
The driver was slapped with two charges; using a government vehicle for any purpose other than that authorised without a written authority of a proper officer and that of allegedly using a government vehicle on a weekend (Saturday).


Gwebu said he found the government vehicle parked outside Sifundzani Primary School on Saturday.
He said he then charged the driver but the judge allegedly tried to explain to him that she had come to the school to buy uniform for her children.

 

Bhantshana fears for his job

MBABANE – Chief Government Vehicle Inspector Bhantshana Gwebu says his continued detention will result in him losing his job.
This is contained in his bail application which was filed by his lawyer Machawe Sithole under a certificate of urgency yesterday.


Gwebu now wants to be admitted to bail pending the hearing of his matter on Monday.
“I humbly state that I am innocent to the charge of contempt of court and intend to plead not guilty to same during trial. I have bona fide defence to the alleged charge. I am now desirous to be admitted to bail as my continued detention is extremely prejudicial to my health as I am an asthmatic person and suffer from high blood pressure (BP).”


He alleged that at the time of his detention he was supposed to go and pay for his children’s school fees and if not admitted to bail they would suffer irreparable harm as they would not be admitted to school. Gwebu further submitted that he is a civil servant and his continued detention would result in him losing his job.
“I state that I am not a flight risk and I do not have connections outside Swaziland. I also undertake to surrender my passport to the investigating officer until the end of my trial,” he stated.


He stated that on or around January 20, 2014 at or near the Mbabane Police Station he was advised that a warrant of arrest had been issued against him. Gwebu said upon arrival at the Mbabane Magistrates Court he was told that he would appear before a court of law as per the warrant.


“I arranged with my attorney so that he can represent me in court. I informed my attorney that I had been taken to the High Court.  The warrant of apprehension borders around a charge of contempt of court allegedly committed on January 18, 2014. I was then remanded back into custody until January 27, 2014. I am now booked at Sidwashini Correctional facility,” he stated.

 

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