Zimbabwe’s first lady Grace Mugabe reportedly was all smiles, as she made her first public appearance since fleeing South Africa, under diplomatic immunity, in an assault case
Grace Mugabe, 52, who refused to honor an accord with local police to turn in herself, left South Africa on Sunday, on a controversial granted diplomatic immunity from the South African govt
She’d been accused of attacking model Gabriella Engels, 20, with an electric extension cable
Engels required extensive stitching on her forehead after the attack
The victim who feared Grace Mugabe was going to kill her, is furious her assailant may never be held to account
A cheerful Mrs Mugabe was seen attending a farming fair in Harare
All smiles: Grace Mugabe was today visiting stands at the annual Agricultural Show in Harare, the Zimbabwe capital
Zimbabwe’s first lady, Grace Mugabe, has made her first public appearance since leaving South Africa, where she has been charged with assault.
The 52-year-old wife of Robert Mugabe, 93, a potential successor to the president, was granted diplomatic immunity and left South Africa on Sunday.
She was accused of attacking model Gabriella Engels, 20, who needed 14 stitches and said she feared the dictator’s wife was going to kill her.
South Africa borders on ‘red alert’ for Grace Mugabe – Zimbabwe’s first lady assaulted and injured girl, 20, while visiting SA with her husband, and failed to turn herself in
Grace Mugabe fled South Africa Sunday under the cover of diplomatic immunity, the third occasion that ploy had been used to get her out of legal trouble this year.
It came just days after she was granted diplomatic immunity in South Africa over an alleged attack on a 20-year-old model. Engels accused Mrs Mugabe of whipping her with an electric extension cable as she waited with two friends in a luxury hotel suite to meet one of the Mugabes’ adult sons.
But South Africa’s opposition is challenging the international relations minister’s decision to give her immunity – a move that could in theory affect any future plans to travel to the country.
The Mugabes attended a farming fair in Harare, where Mrs Mugabe was seen smiling and talking with exhibitors. She made no public comment.
Model Gabriella Engels [photo], alleged that Grace Mugabe assaulted her in an attack which left her so badly injured she needed 14 stitches, after inquiring about her 21-year-old-son
South African opposition say the diplomatic immunity granted G
Harare has made no official comment on the assault case and requests for comment from Zimbabwean government officials have gone unanswered.
South Africa’s main opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) party has asked the Constitutional Court for permission to argue its case that Grace Mugabe’s diplomatic immunity be declared unconstitutional.
‘Grace Mugabe is not a member of the Zimbabwean government and she was in South Africa on personal business,’ the party’s federal executive chairman, James Selfe, said.
‘There is nothing in either South African or international law which renders her deserving of diplomatic immunity.’
Selfe said the party hoped that if the immunity is lifted Mugabe would have to surrender herself to South African state prosecutors or be extradited to face the charges, else she could be declared persona non grata, prohibited from visiting South Africa.
Gabriella Engels, [showing her injury] is ‘furious’ at the thought that her attacker might never be held to account for her beastly behavior
The victim herself last week sad she was ‘furious’ at the thought that her attacker might never be held to account: ‘I am scared she will never be held to account for what she did to me,’ Gabriella said.
This came as eyewitnesses in the Zimbabwe capital, Harare reported seeing Mrs Mugabe’s motorcade speeding from the airport a few hours after she had been due to surrender to police in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Advocacy group Afriforum has given legal backing to the alleged victim, Engels, and is working on the case with Gerrie Nel – the prosecutor who secured a murder conviction against Olympic and Paralympic runner Oscar Pistorius.