by Friday, January 13th, 2012
An alarming number of people continue to be arrested for drug trafficking in South Africa, despite the recent severe Chinese sanction, where a South African woman was executed for her alleged role as a drug mule in Beijing.
The South African Police Service (SAPS) on Thursday revealed that in 2011 in Cape Town International Airport alone 34 drug mules were arrested after search dogs detected their loads of illegal substances (like cocaine, tik and khat) estimated at street value of ZAR 7.5 million.
The general public are still questioning the government authorities role in cracking down on illegal drug trafficking after Sheryl Cwele (50), spouse of Siyabonga Cwele South Africa’s Minister of State Security, was received a 12-year jail sentence after a court convicted her for recruiting young women as drug mules to smuggle cocaine from South America into the South Africa. This has sparked calls for the minister’s resignation, but the government has swept the issue under the carpet, political experts said.
She has been let out on bail (ZAR 100,000) and is appealing her ruling, while South African Broadcasting Company (SABC) reported that a frantic mother is doing all she can to help free her duped drug mule daughter (31-year-old Tessa Beetge) who was arrested in Brasil after she was caught with 10kg of cocaine. Beetge received an 8-year jail sentence in Soa Paulo.
The daughter claims that she was recruited by Sheryl Cwele. Ironically Sheryl Cwele was immediately suspended from her job as director of the health service of a local municipality, but nevertheless she is allegedly still receiving a hefty monthly salary (allegedly ZAR 30,000/month), after a labour court ruled in her favour and reinstated her full salary following her dismissal.