Swazi chief justice urged to stop evading arrest

Swaziland's Chief Justice Michael Ramodibedi is being urged to stop evading arrest by keeping himself and his family locked in his mansion. (The Nation)

Swaziland's Chief Justice Michael Ramodibedi is being urged to stop evading arrest by keeping himself and his family locked in his mansion. (The Nation)

Swaziland’s National Police Commissioner Isaac Magagula has called upon the Chief Justice, Michael Ramodibedi, to stop holding his family hostage in an attempt to evade arrest.

The Swaziland Chief Justice faces criminal charges of corruption and defeating the ends of justice. He has been holed-up in a bunker in his mansion in Beverly Hills, Mbabane, since Saturday.

Magagula, addressing journalists at police headquarters in Mbabane this afternoon, called upon the chief justice to surrender and allow the law to take its course instead of using his family as human shields.

The police chief confirmed that Ramodibedi is in possession of two firearms. 

“The members of his family are innocent and they just happen to be victims of circumstances,” said Magagula.

Ramodibedi is accompanied by his wife and their two teenage children, according to reports.

Difficult situation
Magagula said the Swazi were “caught between a rock and a hard place”.

“Nonetheless, we are confident that at the end of the day, justice will prevail.” The police chief added that a special envoy from Lesotho is in Swaziland to discuss the matter of the Chief Justice with Swazi authorities.

“We are accordingly giving this diplomatic route all the respect to run its course. To this end, storming in may not be the best option for now as we want to ensure that loss of life is avoided at all costs.
In such a scenario, logic dictates that we tread with caution, not because we are week-kneed, but simply on account that whatever options we might use are weighed carefully to avoid complicating the matter further,” said Magagula.

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