Josina Machel's alleged attacker skips court date

2016-12-22 19:02
Josina Machel. Picture: Elizabeth Sejake

Josina Machel. Picture: Elizabeth Sejake

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Cape Town - Graca Machel's daughter Josina is anxiously awaiting the January court appearance of an ex-boyfriend she has accused of hitting her so hard that she went blind in one eye.

This after he missed a previous court date which she had hoped would finally provide her with a measure of closure after she lodged a complaint of grievous bodily harm against him in Mozambique.

The incident happened on October 17, 2015 and he was expected to have finally appeared in a court there on December 16 this year after she lodged the complaint.

But this did not happen.

"[He] did not show up at the court appearance scheduled for December 16, allegedly due to medical consultations and business meetings in Johannesburg until December 30," Josina said via email correspondence.

He is only expected to return to Mozambique mid-January so instead of approaching authorities to have him brought back to the country, the family is keenly waiting to see if he keeps his next court date of January 17.

"The Machel family has decided to follow the Mozambican legislation which will only apply a harsher stance if he decides to once again abscond from appearing in court in January 2017 and defying the rule of law," she explained.

Attacked day before mother's birthday

But the waiting has been difficult for Josina, who has said she decided to speak out in solidarity with other victims of domestic violence.

"This has taken a huge toll on me, like any other survivor of violence, because justice delayed is justice denied. We live in a constant state of anxiety and emotional turmoil with such prolonged processes."

In a photograph posted on Instagram, Josina, a women's rights activist, poses with her eyes closed in a shot that looks like any other summer selfie - eyelids glowing with bronze and gold eye shadow.

But in a second photograph she opens her eyes to show the full extent of the brutal attack, which she has alleged started in his car on the eve of her mother's birthday celebrations.

According to a City Press report after the attack, she said she had been with family for her mother's birthday which was the next day.

She told her partner she wanted to go home and sleep in her mother's bed to be close to her, but an argument started in the car.

She said that after being struck, she got out of the car and stumbled through the street, holding her eye and screaming for help.

Lonely, scary experience

"My eye was leaking so much that I was asking for help while covering the other eye because I thought [it] was actually falling out," she said.

Nobody came out to help her.

"It was a horrifying experience. It was one of the loneliest and scariest experiences that one can go through," she told the publication.

Determined to make sure he faces the full might of the law, the women's rights activist laid charges with police and was braced for his court appearance in Mozambique on December 16.

"Today is a day I have been praying for: First day in Court against my attacker. The Lord is my Succor. Kulungile Baba [It is well Father]," she posted on Instagram, wearing dark glasses to cover her injury.

Instead, the accused was a no-show. He was also not immediately available on Thursday to comment.

In the meantime, she has remained actively involved in her work to stop violence against women and children, and in one of her latest social media posts implores her followers not to confine their prevention and support to "16 days of activism" directed at these vulnerable groups, but to be activists against the abuse of women and children all year.

Read more on:    women abuse

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