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Siqokoqela Mphoko granted $50 000 bail

by Staff reporter
21 Sep 2022 at 05:57hrs | Views
FORMER Vice-President Phelekezela Mphoko's son Siqokoqela, who is facing charges of allegedly raping his 12-year-old niece as well as escaping from lawful custody, has been released on $50 000 bail by the High Court.

Mphoko (44) of Hillside suburb in Bulawayo, last week appeared before regional magistrate Mr Mark Dzira facing three counts of rape and escaping from lawful custody. He was remanded to October 18 for trial.

In granting Mphoko bail, Bulawayo High Court judge Justice Martin Makonese Dube ordered the applicant to report once a month at Hillside Police Station and to continue residing at his given address until the matter is finalised.

"It is ordered that the applicant deposit $50 000 with the criminal registrar of the High Court in Bulawayo and to report at Hillside Police Station every last Friday of the month," ruled the judge.

Mphoko was also ordered to surrender his travel documents and title deeds of his property to the criminal registrar of the High Court in Bulawayo as part of the bail conditions.

The ruling by Justice Makonese followed an application for bail pending trial by Mphoko, through his lawyer Mr Zibusiso Ncube of Ncube and Partners.

In papers before the court, the State which was represented by Mr Thobekani Mathanzima Nyathi, was cited as a respondent.

In his bail statement, Mphoko is denying the charge, arguing that the allegations are a conspiracy by senior family members who want to silence him in his quest to know his biological mother.

"I actually sent the grandfather of the victim to go and ask my father who my biological mother was. The victim's mother examined her daughter's panties and she purports to have seen a blood stain on her undies on August 29, which stain was never examined by a specialist," argued Mphoko.

He said a doctor who examined the minor on August 30 observed that there were no vaginal tears contrary to her mother alleging that she had spotted blood stains on the girl's panties.

"The interest of justice would not be hampered if I were to be admitted to bail. I am a good candidate for bail and to support this argument I will not interfere with witnesses, and the complainant now lives with her maternal grandfather in Old Lobengula," said Mphoko.

The State opposed the application, arguing that there were compelling reasons warranting Mphoko's continued detention.

"Compelling reasons for denying bail are encapsulated in Section 117(2) (a) of the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act and these are the likelihood to disturb public peace or safety of anyone or likelihood to commit an offence," said Mr Nyathi.

"In casu, the applicant was called by police to come to Hillside Police Station after a report of rape was made against him. He was placed under police custody before he later fled from lawful custody, thus not a good candidate for bail."

The State also raised fears of Mphoko likely to commit suicide if released on bail.

"His conduct at the police station upon his arrest presented him as someone who is suicidal. We are therefore of the view that if applicant is released on bail, he may commit suicide," said Mr Nyathi

According to court papers, it is alleged that some time between May and August, Mphoko unlawfully and intentionally had sexual intercourse with his niece aged 12 (name withheld) thrice without her consent.

Mphoko is also charged with escaping from lawful custody. On August 30, at around 4.30PM and at ZRP Hillside Charge Office, Mphoko was arrested and brought to the charge office for a crime of rape by one Assistant Inspector Admire Donha.

While in the charge office he was booked for detention under ZRP Hillside detention book reference number 284/22 and he had signed for his belongings for detention.

Mphoko requested to get his medication from his motor vehicle which was parked outside the charge office, before he could be taken to the police cells for detention.

He was escorted by Constable Chimuka to his motor vehicle. Upon arrival he jumped into his vehicle and sped off to unknown destination.

Source - The Chronicle