Minister Xingwana holds on to nephew’s daughter despite court order

2013-03-15 14:47

A case involving the nephew of Women, Children and People with Disabilities Minister Lulu Xingwana’s was postponed at the Mthatha High Court today.

Xingwana’s nephew and a 27-year-old Mqanduli woman are entangled in a bitter battle over the custody of their two-year-old daughter, who cannot be named to protect her identity, and who now lives under the minister’s roof despite a court order that she should be returned to her mother.

The case was postponed to allow the child to be brought into court before a final decision is made.

“The case will be postponed to be handed down before the presiding judge on April 3 2013, alternatively, on any earlier date when the minor child is brought to court either by the applicant or the respondent, as the case may be. The judge still insists that the minor child be brought to court when judgment is handed down,” read a letter from the court registrar.

This comes a week after Judge Majiki ordered the toddler be returned to her mother by March 7. This did not happen as Xingwana’s nephew, through his lawyer Arnie Immerman, challenged the decision by filling an appeal on the same date the child was meant to be returned.

This Wednesday saw another twist in the case as the paternal grandmother of the child went to Pretoria to take the child from Xingwana’s home, where she has been staying since February 1, when the previous judge in the case, Zamini Nhlangulela, ordered that the child stay with the Xingwanas.

However, the grandmother left the ministerial home in Waterkloof empty-handed as she was prevented from taking the child because of an appeal against the previous court order she was carrying.

The minor child was taken by Xingwana and her nephew from her mother’s care in Mqanduli early last month after Judge Nhlangulela granted the father an interim order.

Last month City Press reported how Xingwana, the minister responsible for government’s 16 Days of Activism for No Violence Against Women and Children campaign and her nephew, flanked by two bodyguards and three police officers, took the toddler from her distraught grandmother.

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