VIDEO: Rape charge against DG dropped

The former director-general of the Eastern Cape, Dr Loyiso Mbabane, has been cleared of the rape charge that scuttled his position as head of the provincial administration.

The charge against Mbabane was withdrawn in court on Tuesday following a decision of the deputy director of public prosecutions in Grahamstown, Malherbe Marais.

No reason for the decision was provided during the hearing.

No response to questions to Marais’ office via National Prosecution Authority (NPA) regional spokesman Tsepo Ndwalaza was received at the time of writing.

Mbabane referred queries to his attorney, Lwazi Dekeda, who said that “as far as I know” no representations were made by the defence for a stay of prosecution.

Mbabane’s tenure as top civil servant in the provincial government was short-lived after he was arrested in late January this year, just four weeks after he started work in Bhisho.

A week later, as he waged a concerted battle from jail to be released on bail, Mbabane quit his R1.7-million job in the office of premier Phumullo Masualle.

He was released on R10000 bail by the Grahamstown High Court.

Mbabane was accused of raping a relative, whose identity is protected in terms of sexual offences laws.

Dekeda said his client was “elated” at the withdrawal of the charge, which had been a “dark cloud hanging over his head”.

The chairman of the National Education, Health and Allied Workers’ Union branch in the office of the premier, Loyiso Sobili, said the union welcomed the withdrawal of charges. — rayh@dispatch.co.za

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