The four South African citizens namely Cassimjee Bilal, Henry Radebe, Samuel Baloyi and Sydney Sekgobela who were holed up in the country for the past six months since their arrest in February did not attend a scheduled remand court hearing on Monday morning prompting state prosecutor Joyce Sithole to apply for a warrant of arrest for them.
Magistrate Don Ndirowei issued a warrant of arrest for the four after their names were called three times outside the court room without responses.
The drivers’ lawyer Beatrice Mtetwa told the court that she wasn’t aware of the whereabouts of her clients.
“We last heard and checked at their residence on Monday …..and we have not been able to ascertain their whereabouts,” said Mtetwa.
Bilal, Radebe, Baloyi and Sekgobela were arrested in February and charged with fraud after they drove three Iveco trucks using temporary import permits and delivered them to First Lady Grace Mugabe’s orphanage in Mazowe under the instructions of Ping Sung Hsieh, an associate of the First Family, whom they have fallen out with.
Early this month a South African court dismissed an attempt by the Attorney General’s office to extradite Ping Sung Hsieh to jointly stand trial with the drivers.
During their last appearance in court in July, the South African citizens begged for freedom and to be send home to reunite with their families and fend for them and be allowed to return to court on 29 August.
The drivers told the court that life in Zimbabwe was difficult for them. Bilal said he needed to go home to allow his wife Nzameera Ebrahim to undergo a long delayed heart transplant to save her life.