Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi has stuck to his guns that there is no evidence that self-proclaimed prophet Shepherd Bushiri came to the country three times. This is despite Bushiri being on the wanted list of the police after he escaped to Malawi last year.
Motsoaledi told the National Council of Provinces on Tuesday, during question time to ministers in the Security Cluster, that there was no evidence that Bushiri visited the country three times.
Bushiri escaped with his wife, Mary Bushiri, late last year after he skipped bail where he was on trial.
South Africa has sent an extradition request to Malawi to send him back to stand trial.
Motsoaledi said that despite reports that Bushiri has been to South Africa on three separate occasions, there was nothing to prove that.
He said even the Hawks distanced themselves from the reports.
“Nobody ever denied that Bushiri escaped out of this country. On the contrary, a team led by by military intelligence, state security and the police, in other words a team led by the Minister of Defence, the Minister of Police with their respective departments which includes home affairs, sat down to investigate this matter. I am sure you are aware that the Hawks, which are leading that team, made a statement that that they will never release the results of that investigation because it is a matter that is going to court,” said Motsoaledi.
“At no stage had we ever denied the fact that Bushiri has escaped and officials might have helped him. I don’t know, honourable member, where I ever said no official helped them. It’s clear he has been helped by somebody, whether it is home affairs, police or what, state officials might have helped Bushiri and the Hawks at the appropriate time will give information.”