Sunday, November 27, 2022

Matlhabaphiri -Tafi’s ‘adultery’ battle moves to Customary Court

It seems the public will never get to hear the end of the Assistant Minister of Health, Gaotlhaetse Matlhabaphiri versus Simon Tafi’s ‘adultery’ battle as four years since the accusations against Matlhabaphiri first surfaced, Tafi is dragging the Assistant Minister to the Molepolole Customary Court, demanding damages for “marriage wrecking”.

This follows a split with his wife who he accused of having an illicit affair with Matlhabaphiri, also Member of Parliament for Molepolole North.

“I want eight heads of cattle as payment for damages,” Tafi says.

He told Sunday Standard that it all started back in 2009 when his wife, Mmaonene Tafi, boasted to him about having an affair with Matlhabaphiri, to whom she was employed as a maid.

“I then called the Assistant Minister requesting him to terminate my wife’s employment because she was having an affair and he refused, insisting that my wife was not having an affair with anyone under his watch,” Tafi said.

He added that he began taking the issue more seriously when one night the wife refused to grant him conjugal rights saying she had just had sex with Matlhabaphiri.

“I asked her if she knew she could get us both infected with HIV/AIDS and she said that was not possible as Matlhabaphiri had circumcised,” Tafi said.

He says after finding them in his car together he called on the elders to intervene but to no avail.

In 2012, Tafi was arraigned before the Extension Two Magistrate Court on charges of assaulting his wife where the Assistant Minister was also subpoenaed to testify.

Tafi admitted striking his wife on the head with a rod and assaulting his mother in law in a fit of rage after the wife boasted of her alleged affair with the assistant minister. The case was subsequently dismissed.

Meanwhile, Matlhabaphiri had always maintained his innocence, saying that his relation with Mmaonene Tafi was never beyond that of employer-employee.

Senior Chief Representative at the Molepolole Tribal Administration, Lawrence Mhaladi, confirmed the case will be heard on Friday 21st June at the Main Kgotla.

Mhaladi refuted claims by some observers that the Assistant Minister had requested that the case be heard in camera.

Kgosi Donald Mosielele, a member of the Customary Court of Appeal, says according to Customary Law all cases are heard in an open court. “Only cases involving juveniles may be heard in private,” he says.

Despite several attempts Matlhabaphiri could not be reached for comment as his mobile phone rang unanswered.


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