Mbabane-Incarcerated Members of Parliament (MP) Hosea’s Mduduzi “Bacede” Mabuza and Ngwempisi’s Mthandeni Dube are expected to appear before Judge Mumsy Dlamini at the High Court of Eswatini today.
The two MP’s are appearing with regards to their ongoing case in which they were charged with contravening the Suppression of Terrorism Act. Mabuza also faces an additional charge of allegedly breaching Regulation 4 of the Disaster Management Regulations under the Disaster Management Act (Covid 19 rules).
It is alleged that they incited people to revolt against the government and engage in violent activity that culminated in the political unrest in the country. This manifested in riots that caused the loss of life, injury to people, and the destruction of private and public property. The two were arrested on July 25, 2021.
Linked to these two arrests is the involvement of their colleague, Siphofaneni Member of Parliament (MP) Mduduzi “Gawuzela” Simelane who is also wanted for the same charges. Simelane however, has been able to evade arrest and as such has been labelled as a fugitive from the law.
Furthermore, the three MP’s are alleged to have demanded that the constitution be amended so that the Prime Minister be elected by the people and not appointed by the Monarch.
The two MP’s have both previously applied for bail which was dismissed twice by Judge Mumsy Dlamini. Their first bail application was on August 6, 202. Subsequently, on August 18, 2021, they filed a fresh bail application wherein they contended that there were fresh circumstances that warranted their release on bail. Having listened to the merits of the judgement which were argued on September 7, 2021, Judge Dlamini issued her ruling denying the two MP’s bail. In their second application, she declared that the High Court was now functus officio and as such there was no longer any recourse that the two MP’s could solicit from her in as far as the matter was concerned.
The Crown is represented by South African-based Advocate Gareth Lepan as instructed by Principal Crown Counsels Macebo Nxumalo and Absalom Makhanya whereas Mabuza and Dube are represented by South African Advocate Kuss Van Vuran instructed by Human Rights attorney Thulani Maseko.