Nandipha Magudumana heads back to court to fight for freedom after four months in jail

Dr Nandipha Magudumana will apply for bail in the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday. File Picture: Timothy Bernard African News Agency (ANA)

Dr Nandipha Magudumana will apply for bail in the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday. File Picture: Timothy Bernard African News Agency (ANA)

Published Aug 29, 2023


The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) will oppose Dr Nandipha Magudumana’s bail application in the Bloemfontein Magistrate's Court after she was arrested in Arusha, Tanzania, with her fugitive boyfriend, Facebook rapist and murderer Thabo Bester.

Magudumana’s bail application has been set down for today and tomorrow. Magudumana elected not to apply for bail when she was arrested in April, first electing to have her arrest declared unlawful by the Free State High Court.

The court dismissed her application, where she wanted the court to declare her arrest unlawful, saying she had been extradited and not deported.

The court did confirm that she had been extradited, but it said the arrest was not unlawful, as she had been a willing participant in her own extradition.

An attempt to appeal was dismissed.

NPA spokesperson Phaladi Shuping confirmed they were opposing bail.

Magudumana faces multiple charges of fraud and corruption, violating a corpse, harbouring and concealing an escaped offender, and defeating the ends of justice.

She is being kept at the Bizzah Makhete Correctional Centre in Kroonstad, near Bloemfontein.

Last week, she issued a letter through her lawyers, claiming powerful politicians and business people were behind her suffering and incarceration.

Magudumana was arrested alongside the convicted Facebook rapist after being on the run from authorities in South Africa. They had allegedly been on the run after it was exposed that Bester had faked his fiery prison cell death in June last year.

A photograph from July last year, taken from a Sandton supermarket, showed Magudumana and Bester together. It was made public in March in an explosive report by the non-profit news agency GroundUp.

Investigations by JICS - the Judicial Inspectorate for Correctional Services, the SA Police Service, and the Department of Correctional Services showed that the governmental agencies had suspected as early as August last year that Bester may have escaped from his cell at the Mangaung Correctional Centre.

She claimed physical, emotional, financial, and sexual abuse "at the hands of powerful men, including some of the most powerful and prominent families in South Africa currently occupying the highest offices in government and business".

Magudumana claimed she would be able to share more about her alleged suffering at the hands of the unnamed businesspeople and politicians.

To read more about the entire Bester and Magudumana saga, click here.

A look back at how Thabo Bester became the Facebook rapist.

Other accused in the Bester matter are Magudumana, former G4S prison warder Senohe Matsoara, Zanda Moyo, Zolile Cornelius Sekeleni, former Integritron Integrated Solutions camera technician Teboho Lipholo, suspended G4S employee Tieho Frans Makhotsa, former G4S guard Buti Masukela, suspended G4S employee Natassja Jansen and G4S employees, Joel Makhetha, Moeketsi Ramolula and Thabang Mier, who were granted bail of R10,000.