A Mystery On Wheels: The Curious Case Of Dr. Nandipha’s R1.35 Million Credit Car, Found Abandoned In Zimbabwe
The narrative surrounding one of South Africa’s most significant criminal escapes continues to evolve in increasingly bizarre ways.
Recent disclosures indicate that Thabo Bester, a convicted rapist and murderer, and Dr. Nandipha Magudumana may have fled to Zimbabwe together.
The duo, who are currently on the run after their cover was exposed by GroundUp, had been leading a life of luxury in Johannesburg, with Bester having successfully faked his death in May 2022 and sought refuge with Magudumana.
The two were reportedly renting five extravagant mansions in the city. However, what events led up to their opulent lifestyle?
According to a report by IOL, Thabo Bester’s jail smugglers from Zimbabwe made an attempt to smuggle him into their neighbouring country following the meticulously orchestrated escape from Mangaung Maximum Prison.
The smugglers and Bester’s accomplices engaged in a shootout with soldiers at the Beitbridge Border Post before managing to escape, with one member of the group sustaining an injury.
They then fled into Zimbabwe on foot and remained low-profile in the country for a while before eventually reuniting with Dr. Nandipha upon returning to South Africa.
The Citizen obtained access to videos that expose how Dr. Nandipha, who had initially appeared innocent, abandoned a new car in Zimbabwe on 17 January.
The videos, which are two months old, show Dr. Nandipha admitting to private investigators from the car dealership that she had failed to repay her debt.
The doctor had purchased the Mercedes-Benz AMG E63 in 2022 for R1.35 million.
However, the private investigator managed to trace the vehicle to Zimbabwe.
During the investigation, Dr. Nandipha disclosed that her partner was responsible for paying off the car but declined to name him when asked if it was her husband.
At that time, Thabo Bester’s cover had not yet been blown. The dealership in question is said to possess videos that capture Dr. Nandipha crossing Beitbridge Border Post into Zimbabwe.
Border officials grew suspicious upon noticing the fake Zimbabwean number plates on the Mercedes-Benz AMG E63.
Subsequently, Dr. Nandipha evaded the officials and fled back to South Africa on foot.
The officials impounded the car and demanded a payment of US$80,000 (equivalent to R1.4 million) before releasing it.
It remains to be seen if Thabo Bester and Dr. Nandipha’s fascination with Zimbabwe provides any hints as to their current location or if it is merely another scheme to mislead the authorities. Only time will reveal the truth.