South African national dies in Mozambique prison, Dirco to investigate

Andre Hanekom, the 62-year-old South African national who had been detained in a Mozambique prison since August last year, has died in custody.

Hanekom’s daughter Amanda confirmed his death in a Facebook post on Wednesday afternoon. “My dad died early this morning in mysterious circumstances in the hospital in Pemba,” she wrote.

Department of international relations and cooperation spokesperson Ndivhuwo Mabaya says Minister Lindiwe Sisulu has instructed the high commissioner in Mozambique to “find out what happened” to Hanekom.

Mabaya told the Mail & Guardian that Hanekom had been admitted to a prison hospital on Friday afternoon. The cause of his hospitalisation is unknown.

Dirco did confirm that the high commissioner, Ambassador Mandisi Bongani Mabuto Mpahlwa, had visited Hanekom last week after his family had raised concerns over his health.

Hanekom was expected to appear before a court in Mozambique this month after he was accused of supporting and aiding terrorist activities in northern parts of the country.

AFP reported that Hanekom was formally arrested in August after being seized by military personnel from a restaurant in Pamla. Known as “baba mzungo” or “white father”, Hanekom was allegedly responsible for logistics in terror-related activities.

Hanekom’s family, however, says he was wrongfully arrested and was being framed.

Francis, Hanekom’s wife, told the media earlier in January that her husband was arrested because “influential people desired Andre’s property on the beach.”

His court case, Amanda said, was going to take place at the end of January.


“He would of won, we have mountains of proof of his innocence,” she wrote.

“My heart is so broken and hollow, my dad was our rock when anything was down, he gave us strength.”

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever. But it comes at a cost. Advertisers are cancelling campaigns, and our live events have come to an abrupt halt. Our income has been slashed.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years. We’ve survived thanks to the support of our readers, we will need you to help us get through this.

To help us ensure another 35 future years of fiercely independent journalism, please subscribe.

Advertising

High Court strikes down ‘paternalistic’ lockdown regulations

The order of unconstitutionality has been suspended for two weeks

L’Oréal workers demand a shutdown of local plant, citing Covid-19...

The French cosmetics company’s Midrand plant has recorded 16 Covid-19 cases in two weeks

Protective equipment for schools in KwaZulu-Natal goes ‘missing’

Without protective equipment, schools in uMlazi, Pinetown and Zululand won’t meet the already delayed deadline for reopening
Advertising

Press Releases

Empowering his people to unleash their potential

'Being registered as an AGA(SA) means you are capable of engineering an idea and turning it into money,' says Raymond Mayekisa

What is an AGA(SA) and AT(SA) and why do they matter?

If your company has these qualified professionals it will help improve efficiencies and accelerate progress by assisting your organisation to perform better

Mining company uses rich seam of technology to gear up for Covid-19

Itec Direct technology provides instant temperature screening of staff returniing to the workplace with no human contact

Covid-19 and Back to School Webinar

If our educators can take care of themselves, they can take care of the children they teach

5G technology is the future

Besides a healthcare problem Covid-19 is also a data issue and 5G technology, with its lightning speed, can help to curb its spread

JTI off to court for tobacco ban: Government not listening to industry or consumers

The tobacco ban places 109 000 jobs and 179 000 wholesalers and retailers at risk — including the livelihood of emerging farmers

Holistic Financial Planning for Professionals Webinar

Our lives are constantly in flux, so it makes sense that your financial planning must be reviewed frequently — preferably on an annual basis

Undeterred by Covid-19 pandemic, China and Africa hold hands, building a community of a shared future for mankind

It is clear that building a community with a shared future for all mankind has become a more pressing task than ever before

The best local and international journalism

handpicked and in your inbox every weekday