Fugitive Grace Mugabe fails to turn for court; reports says she has fled

Johannesburg – A few minutes before the Randburg Magistrates Court was set to close for the day, it was still not clear whether Grace Mugabe, wife of Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe, would appear on Tuesday.

This is despite earlier reports that the first lady had presented herself to South African police earlier on.

Police spokesperson Brigadier Vish Naidoo told The Star newspaper that Mugabe had not presented herself to police despite an agreement to do so.

“The accused in the matter involved in the assault of a 20-year-old Johannesburg woman had made arrangements with police to hand herself over but she is yet to do so,” Naidoo said.

National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Phindi Mjonondwana earlier in the day said they had not received a docket for the matter and as such, could not proceed with the matter.

A large media contingent from various media houses have been camping outside the Randburg magistrate awaiting her arrival.

This comes after a Johannesburg model claimed that she was assaulted by Grace after being in the company of her two sons at the weekend.

Gabriella Engels‚ 20‚ alleged that the assault took place at the Capital 20 West hotel in Sandton on Sunday night.

Engels said she suffered gashes to her forehead and scalp.

In a statement released by the police, Naidoo said: “Since yesterday‚ it has emerged on several media and social media platforms that a 20-year-old South African woman was allegedly assaulted by a prominent woman at a hotel in Sandton.”

Meanwhile, there are unconfirmed reports that Mugabe has returned to Zimbabwe after landing at the Harare International Airport.

It remains unclear if a warrant of arrest has been issued.

The Star