Home affairs probes illegal deportation

2014-09-09 20:44

Johannesburg - The illegal deportation of a Botswana man who could face the death penalty is being investigated, the home affairs department said on Tuesday.

Edwin Samotse is accused of murder in his home country, spokesperson Mayihlome Tshwete said in a statement.

Two home affairs officials have been suspended for allegedly arranging his transfer back to Botswana on 13 August without authority to do so. Samotse was in custody at the Polokwane police station while the Botswana government sought his extradition.

The South African government asked for an assurance that Samotse would not face the death penalty if he were extradited. The Botswana government did not agree to this.

In two previous cases, the courts decided that the South African government and its officials could not deport people to countries where capital punishment was used, if such an assurance was not given.

On 13 August the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria issued a similar order in the Samotse matter, Tshwete said.

"Officials from the department of home affairs, without prior knowledge of the director general and without any authority, secured the release of Mr Samotse from the Polokwane police station and transported him to the Groblersbrug port of entry between South Africa and Botswana, where they handed him over to Botswana officials.

"Accordingly, the department condemns these actions as unlawful and unconstitutional."

Tshwete said the department was trying to resolve the matter with the Botswana government.

Lawyers for Human Rights said in a statement on its website that it and Legal Aid SA would approach the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Monday.

They wanted the court to compel home affairs to find Samotse and get an assurance from the Botswana government that he would not face the death penalty if convicted.

  • Mosilinyane Claudi - 2014-09-09 20:55

    hahahaha ........ well done Home Affairs. High Five!!

      Kevin Marsh - 2014-09-11 04:57

      Remember Botswana citizens . Commit murder and then come to SA and all is well . We have enough of our own thugs and do not need to keep more at he expense of the tax payer .

  • Edward Radingoana - 2014-09-09 20:59

    The guy is not a citizen of this country, so why is he denied the right to go and face consequences of law of his country? He committed an offence there and should be punished accordingly. Are we now protecting the fugitives? We demanded Dewani because he is suspected of a crime done in our country, why did we not leave him?

      kalabafazi - 2014-09-10 13:38

      Heinrich - He is alleged to have committed murder in his home country for which the punishment is death. Imagine if every murderer in Botswana headed this way just to escape the death sentence. Send him back I say. He should have thought of the consequences before taking another life.

  • Simba Mariri - 2014-09-09 21:03

    Edward you lack critical thinking tools. The issue was not avoiding justice but issues of the death penalty which South Africa opposes.

      Andre Voster - 2014-09-10 08:03

      Simba yes S.A oppose it because they wont be able to keep up delivering sentences once they begin hanging. The cue for the job of executioner will be 10 blocks long and most will do it for free. We are all sick and tired of murderers and rapist remove them out of society for ever.

  • Iuliana Butucel Moosa - 2014-09-09 21:35

    So let's keep all criminals in SA cos we don't have our streets full of criminal's. Let him go and take same of ours to cos our government is to nice with criminals.

  • Richard Nieckau - 2014-09-09 21:41

    Ohh,, I did not realise they execute convicted murderers in this changes things

  • Avhashoni Tshatsinde - 2014-09-09 21:50

    Home Affairs officials deserve a Bell's for a job well done. South African must not be used as a haven by scumbags. They shud all be deported to go face the musics from where ever they ran away from.

  • Anthoula Joshua - 2014-09-09 22:04

    1 Murderer less to feed in SA. Botswana has the punishment that fits the crime.

  • George Nkoe - 2014-09-09 23:04

    so now RSA is dismissing their official s because of heartless criminal?

  • Roddy Jardim - 2014-09-09 23:32

    Home affairs officials should be commended, as he could have committed crimes in sa, if he hasn't already.

  • Shaun Geldenhuys - 2014-09-10 01:33

    South Africa should mind its own business that is why Botswana has a low crime rate unlike south Africa where crime is the order of the day in Parliament,the police damn everywhere.

  • Henk Brand - 2014-09-10 02:57

    I am sure he was aware of the death penalty if found guilty of the crime he had committed. Can't see any wrongdoing by these officials.

  • Manyika Mukaro - 2014-09-10 05:34

    This is the reason why SA is safe country for criminals internationally. A murderer can kill anyone. I'm sure SA loses nothing if that murderer reaps what he sowed and where he sowed it.

  • Zahir - 2014-09-10 07:28

    SA must send our criminals over border to face death penalty but anc protects criminals here

  • Owen George West - 2014-09-10 07:59

    The issue is that SA has extradition agreements with each country and before the extradition can take place a process must follow. These officials did not act accordingly. In the UK for example the person must have a trial why he should not be extradited. If we look at the Edward Snowden case because of the lack of ratified agreements between USA and Russia he was not extradited. Same with Dewani he had to appear in court in UK and SA had to meet a few conditions or send him back.

  • Beicime Olfsun - 2014-09-10 08:14

    Too much ignorance in positions of high responsibility. It makes South Africa look like a banana republic.

  • Nin Ja Kitty - 2014-09-10 08:25

    They did something right the wrong way. Nothing the matter with that. A Criminal has been sent back to face the music in his own country. I don't see anything untoward. Home Affairs have messed up favourably this time.

  • Andre Burrows - 2014-09-10 10:14

    Well done Home Affairs. Now for the rest of the 20 million criminals remaining.

  • Luciemarie Swanepoel - 2014-09-10 10:18

    This is SICK!! Our Tourism industry is falling to pieces because the Government wants children to travel with Unabridged Birth Certificates, but a murderer gets protection in our country? This is really sick!!

  • gunnshot - 2014-09-10 14:53

    In Botswana this man will have his day in court. If he is found to have committed premeditated murder, he may very well face the death sentence. That's the law in Botswana and because of it there are many people alive in Botswana that may very well have been murdered if the death sentence was not there. Botswana cares for the welfare of it people. South Africa should learn from them. It is a serious deterrent.

  • Cristina Salva - 2014-09-10 19:58


  • Kevin Marsh - 2014-09-11 04:53

    If he is a murderer then he should hang . We have hundreds of thousands of thugs here who commit violent crime and murder and should hang .

  • Mlambo Fumphanda Thelma - 2014-10-06 14:45

    I want to sue the lady who was on duty on the 13 sep at Roodeport home affairs ! She was so rude and I wish she will loose that job . The one working on cashiers she acts like she owns Home affairs 4getting that she is at work to assit and help people there !! Siyahlukumezwa serious !! If I know her name sure I was going to name her straight away am not scared of that becz I think there is lots of young people with matric out there needs the jobs like that while some people take a joke of people instead of doing her work ncaaaa am so pissed !!!

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