Grace Mugabe immunity: SA between ‘rock & hard place’

International Relations and Cooperation Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane was 'honest' in her approach of the Grace Mugabe immunity saga, University of Johannesburg’s African Diplomacy chair Professor Christopher Landsberg says.

Mugabe was facing criminal charges after she allegedly attacked 20-year-old Gabriella Engles with an electric cord at a Sandton hotel last week Sunday.

She was on Sunday granted diplomatic immunity by the South African government and left the country.

Landsberg says the concept of derivative immunity was used in the Mugabe saga.

Derivative immunity, in other words immunity derived from the fact that the spouse of a head of state joins, kicks in immediately. This was the strategy.

Professor Christopher Landsberg, UJ African Diplomacy chair

What I did not anticipate or say was that she would then take the opportunity to get out of the country.

Professor Christopher Landsberg, UJ African Diplomacy chair

Landsberg says the Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir case is very different to the Grace Mugabe matter.

The two have nothing to do with each other because Zimbabwe is not a part of the Rome Statute, let’s be clear about that.

Professor Christopher Landsberg, UJ African Diplomacy chair

I have to congratulate the minister for an honest letter that she released yesterday, where she said we were faced with a dilemma.

Professor Christopher Landsberg, UJ African Diplomacy chair

Do we get this first lady to stay in the country and face our law and face this unbelievable tonne of diplomatic bricks that will come our way and the ramifications of breaking ties with Zimbabwe.

Professor Christopher Landsberg, UJ African Diplomacy chair

They [the SA government] were caught between a rock and a hard place and in the end, they went for a political decision.

Professor Christopher Landsberg, UJ African Diplomacy chair

Listen to the full audio here:

CapeTalk welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

  • Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
  • Sexism
  • Homophobia
  • Religious intolerance
  • Cyber bullying
  • Hate speech
  • Derogatory language
  • Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the CapeTalk community a safe and welcoming space for all.

CapeTalk reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

CapeTalk is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

Read More
Government has failed us - mother of Gabriella Engels

Government has failed us - mother of Gabriella Engels

Debbie Engels says she's confident AfriForum will get justice for her daughter after Grace Mugabe was granted diplomatic immunity.

AfriForum: SA govt part of plot to help Grace Mugabe escape consequences

AfriForum: SA govt part of plot to help Grace Mugabe escape consequences

AfriForum will help Gabriella Engels file a legal bid asking the court to review the decision to grant Mugabe diplomatic cover.

Grace Mugabe may not have had diplomatic immunity when she entered SA

Grace Mugabe may not have had diplomatic immunity when she entered SA

If you have to be granted immunity on an ad-hoc basis you have to notify the state about it says Prof Hennie Strydom.

[Watch] John Maytham shuts down victim shamer on air

[Watch] John Maytham shuts down victim shamer on air

A caller wanted to know what the alleged victim had done in order for Grace Mugabe to assault her.

Grace Mugabe was not on the diplomatic envoy list - law professor

Grace Mugabe was not on the diplomatic envoy list - law professor

Prof James Grant says she would have had to be listed as a special envoy or representative of another state, and she was not.

Afriforum's Gerrie Nel gives the NPA three months to prosecute Grace Mugabe

Afriforum's Gerrie Nel gives the NPA three months to prosecute Grace Mugabe

AfriForum and its independent prosecution unit will be getting involved in the case of alleged assault of Gabriella Engels.

Police on 'red alert' to prevent Grace Mugabe leaving SA

Police on 'red alert' to prevent Grace Mugabe leaving SA

Mugabe is facing criminal charges after she allegedly assaulted Gabriela engels with an electric cord at a Sandton hotel on Sunday

Grace Mugabe could face jail time - criminal attorney

Grace Mugabe could face jail time - criminal attorney

Criminal attorney, Cliff Alexander believes Mugabe's best option would be to approach the state and complainant for a mediation.

Grace Mugabe used normal passport and can't enjoy diplomatic immunity

Grace Mugabe used normal passport and can't enjoy diplomatic immunity

Shadow Minister of International Relations says Mugabe's case should not be debated any further as she can't enjoy any privileges.

Words you’ll hear: Cold front & Grace Mugabe

Words you’ll hear: Cold front & Grace Mugabe

Water cooler conversations today will be centred around the cold front and Zimbabwe First Lady Grace Mugabe.

Popular articles
Estate agent Aida admits it’s the source of SA’s largest data hack ever

Estate agent Aida admits it’s the source of SA’s largest data hack ever

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviews Stuff magazine’s Toby Shapshak.

UCT engineering student creates affordable grey water system

UCT engineering student creates affordable grey water system

Nkosinathi Nkomo came up with a system that could turn grey water into usable water amidst the Cape Town water crisis.

Meet Whitey Basson (the retail guru who turned Shoprite into a R127bn behemoth)

Meet Whitey Basson (the retail guru who turned Shoprite into a R127bn behemoth)

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviews the former CEO of Africa’s largest retailer by far.

CT airport shooting attempted hit on gang boss allegedly linked to '28s' -expert

CT airport shooting attempted hit on gang boss allegedly linked to '28s' -expert

A policing expert explains that the airport shooting may be linked to the shooting at a Stellenbosch nightclub this past weekend.

Almost 30 million SA ID numbers compromised after site hacked

Almost 30 million SA ID numbers compromised after site hacked

Independent Marketing Consultant in the Technology Space, Andrew Fraser says this looks like a leak and not a hack.

Cape Town International Airport shooting could be gang related - ACSA

Cape Town International Airport shooting could be gang related - ACSA

The incident happened in the early hours of Wednesday morning.