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Durban doctor arrested for hiring patient to kill his brother-in-law

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Inkosi Albert Luthuli hospital doctor arrested

Durban – A neurosurgeon at Inkosi Albert Luthuli hospital has been charged with conspiracy to commit murder.
Dr Anand Rapiti, 43, allegedly hired one of his patients to kill his brother-in-law, who is also a doctor at the facility.

The plan backfired when the hit man alerted police.

The Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (Hawks) arrested Rapiti at the hospital on December 18.

He spent Christmas in Westville Prison and was granted R5000 bail when he appeared before magistrate Kevin Bruorton last week.

Police alleged that during consultations Rapiti talked Desmond Maneveldt into having Dr Melvin Naidu murdered.

On one occasion, according to a source who asked not to be named, Rapiti, who is an avid hunter, suggested Naidu be invited to a hunting outing where his accidental death could be staged.

Instead Maneveldt tipped off police.

Rapiti’s initial bail application came before magistrate Vanitha Armu.

Prosecutor Calvin Govender, who opposed bail, argued that Naidu’s life was in danger. The matter was adjourned and the application then came before magistrate Bruorton.

Rapiti’s legal representative, advocate Paul Jorgensen, read out a statement from his client in support of the application.

Rapiti, who is single and lives with his mother in uMhlanga, said he did not resist arrest. He admitted knowing the State’s two witnesses – Naidu and Maneveldt – “but I lack the ability or intent to interfere with such witnesses”.

“My continued incarceration during this matter in court will not be in the interests of society. I will not endanger the safety of anyone in society.”

Rapiti said he intended pleading not guilty to the charge he faced.

He told the court he used prescription drugs for epilepsy, suffered depression, required consultations with psychiatrists and needed medication for his insomnia.

Rapiti said every two weeks he needed an injection to treat his hormone imbalance.

Prosecutor Mohamed Riaz Hoosen said the State would not oppose Rapiti’s bail application because of his medical conditions and that his personal details had been verified.

Hoosen also read out a statement written by Hawks investigating officer Benedict Chonco, that provided the background to the charge Rapiti faced.

Chonco said Rapiti approached Maneveldt about having Naidu killed in October.

“Maneveldt agreed to do the job because Rapiti told him there was an ex-military person also arranging a hit man from the Glebelands hostel. So he realised that if he did not take it and alert police, an innocent person would be killed,” said Chonco.

Maneveldt received R10000 from Rapiti, which he gave to Chonco and was stored as evidence.

Chonco said three undercover operations were conducted with audio and video recordings gathered from the meetings between Rapiti and Maneveldt, who received a further R25000 payment.

“When arrested, Rapiti believed the murder was still going ahead, the arrest was just a delay, and Maneveldt was introducing him to the hit man.”

Choco said Rapiti made several calls to Maneveldt, asking about the delay, some of which were recorded.

Chonco told the court that Naidu, who was supposed to be killed, contacted him and pleaded that he didn’t contest bail for the sake of his wife.

Naidu is married to Rapiti’s sister Nadine, who is also a doctor.

Granting bail, Bruorton said: “The alleged victim (Naidu) in this matter is not opposed to your release, based on the fact that he’s married to your sister, and this is the reason he doesn’t want you to be incarcerated further.”

He stressed that Rapiti and others should not interfere with or threaten witnesses and that he should report to Durban North police station once a week.

KZN Health acting head of department, Dr Musa Gumede, said they were “shocked and dismayed” at the allegations against Rapiti.

Gumede said an internal inquiry would be conducted, and if Rapiti was found guilty in court, the matter would be reported to the Health Professions Council of SA to take the appropriate steps. Sunday Tribune

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N2 Kei Cuttings bus accident leaves 27 dead

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At least 27 people have been killed in a bus accident on the N2 at Kei Cuttings between East London and Butterworth in the Eastern Cape on Monday afternoon.

The death toll has been revised from earlier reports which indicated that 10 people have died.

Eastern Cape transport department spokesperson, Unathi Binqose, says the number of the deaths could increase as more people were still trapped inside the wrecked bus.

A large number of search and rescue personnel, traffic officers, firefighters and paramedics are on the scene.

Binqose said the death toll is likely to increase as search and rescue personnel plan to flip the bus over to see whether more people are trapped underneath.

The accident took place on the notorious section of the N2, known as the Kei Cuttings, north of the Kei River, which is known for its perilous twists and turns.

Binqose said the driver of the bus is among those who died.

The driver is believed to have lost control of the long-distance passenger bus before it plunged 200 metres down a steep embankment.

Read | 13 killed in KZN horror truck and minibus taxi crash

“He lost control just before he could cross the river on the last curve,” said Binqose.

Chief director of clinical support services for the health department, Kidwell Matshotyana, told TellitallSA that 22 people were stable and did not want to go to hospital.

“In terms of the injured people, we have five patients admitted at Frere Hospital and one at Life St Dominic’s Private Hospital [both in East London],” he said.

The department will arrange transport for the 22 people, who don’t want to go to hospital, to the nearest town. They will be given accommodation.

The bus is understood to have been transporting passengers from Cape Town.

Hospitals and emergency services in the area and further afield were offering help with triaging patients.

He said the police had the grim task of going through the luggage to find identity documents, in order to begin informing the next of kin of the tragedy.

The department would also work with the bus company to establish a contact centre for worried families checking up on people who were on the bus, and those details would be announced later.

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Skeem Saam’s Koko Mantsha death dismissed as fake news

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Koko Mantsha, the popular Skeem Saam character acto, real name, Lydia Mokgokoloshi is not dead.

Social media is awash with news of her death which seems to have been fuelled by fake news sites aiming to profit from unsuspecting lovers of the 80 year-old veteran actress.

Lydia Mokgokoloshi, has appeared in many television shows including Muvhango and Bophelo ke semphego.

Mokgokoloshi was born on 27 September 1939, in Polokwane, Polokwane Local Municipality, Capricorn District Municipality, Limpopo.

She is most famous for acting as Koko Mantsha the grandmother of Katlego Pietersen (Patrick Seleka) in the soap, Skeem Saam.

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Watch: Thulani Dlomo an alleged ‘Zuma spy’, hands himself in

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Thulani dlomo

Thulani Dlomo, the axed former SSA top spy and former SA ambassador to Japan has handed himself over to police on Friday.

Dlomo’s lawyer Philani Shangase said that he handed himself over at his own will at the Durban Central Police station on Friday.

He said Dlomo was not arrested but wanted to clear his name following media reports.

Dlomo was being interviewed by police officers at 17h00 on Friday.

“He has denied all wrong doing,” Shangase said.

Dlomo was suspected to be one of the instigators of the unrest in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.

This is a developing story.

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