Mugabe's Alleged Assault Victim Offered Bribe - Afriforum

"South Africa's police minister said she was due to appear in court but did not show up, fuelling speculation she may have returned to Zimbabwe", ABC News reports.

Ms Engels was visiting a hotel room in an upmarket suburb of Johannesburg where the first lady's sons were staying, where she alleges the assault happened.

But Mugabe failed to hand herself over to police as agreed earlier this week and is now claiming diplomatic immunity.

South Africa's police ministry said on Thursday that it is waiting for instruction from the global relations department regarding Grace Mugabe's status before it proceeds.

Her official duties at the summit could bolster her claim to diplomatic immunity, after her trip to see her sons was widely described as private.

Engels said she was attacked with an electrical extension cord. "She beat me with such force and energy that I never thought she was going to stop", she said.

Hong Kong readers may recall the fiery first lady having been similarly accused back in 2009. Police there said the incident was reported but that no charges were brought.

Circumstances for applying for diplomatic immunity could include not being aware that an action was a crime in another country, or if the crime was committed in furtherance of their own country's interests.

When Nel was asked about why Mugabe was not arrested, he revealed "a positive" that Engels was told by her investigative officer on Thursday morning that he intends to get a warrant soon for Mugabe's arrest.

Zimbabwean first lady Grace Mugabe.

It said in a statement: "Discussions with the suspect's lawyers and the Zimbabwean High Commission representatives are taking place to make sure that the suspect is processed through the legal system".

The model told independent media in South Africa that she fears being victimized for telling it all, noting that she now spends most of her time at home.

Mugabe is now seeking diplomatic immunity.

"I can say to you, the matter is receiving our attention and we are liaising with all involved in the matter of the suspect [Grace Mugabe] who was supposed to appear in court but did not".