Clive Ndou
1 minute read
13 Mar 2014
6:00 am

MaNtuli’s harasser is hospitalised

Clive Ndou

Steven Masunga, the Tanzanian accused of intimidating one of President Jacob Zuma's wives, Nompumelelo Ntuli (MaNtuli), is recovering under police guard in hospital after attempting to commit suicide at the Camperdown Magistrate's Court on Tuesday.

FILE PICTURE: Steven Masunga poses for a photo at the Camperdown Magistrates Court where he is accused of intimidating First Lady Nompumelelo Ntuli. Picture: Clive Ndou

“He is recovering in hospital,” KwaZulu-Natal police spokesperson, Thulane Zwane, said.

After his case was postponed to April on Tuesday, the Tanzanian, swallowed what he said were “tablets meant to end my life”.

“I’m not ready to continue with this case. I’m prepared to die,” he said before swallowing the “tablets” with water.

Turning to his brother, Willow, who was seated in the gallery, Masunga said: “Tell mama I’m sorry.”

The court proceedings continued uninterrupted, with the prosecutor calling out the names of other accused people.

Masunga is facing charges of intimidation following MaNtuli’s complaints that he had sent her threatnening cellphone messages. He was arrested in Durban in January.

Shortly before his arrest, Masunga had e-mailed several media houses in Durban claiming that he had received large sums of money from MaNtuli to buy his silence on the matter relating to her former bodyguard, Phinda Thomo, who reportedly committed suicide in 2009.

Thomo’s death sparked rumours that he had had an affair with MaNtuli.

He is alleged to have taken his own life after realising that a Durban newspaper was on the verge of publishing a story about the affair.

Yesterday Masunga told the court that he was tired of being in prison and that he would prefer to die.

He told the court he had fired his lawyers, who are from the legal aid board, because they had failed to challenge the court’s jurisdiction over his case.