Cattle farmer (31) arrested for 143kg dagga
THE illegal trade and dagga possession seem to be on the rise this festive season as hardly a week passes by without a person making an appearance for illegal dagga possession in the country’s courts.
Yesterday, a 31-year-old man made an appearance at the High Court where he had filed an urgent application for bail after being arrested for being in illegal possession of 143.3 kilogrammes of dagga.
Sandile Clement Mncina was arrested by the Mbabane police after being nabbed with the weed at Ekuvinjelweni area on Tuesday.
The applicant (Mncina) was admitted to bail fixed at E15 000 by the court and was ordered to pay E3 000 cash and E12 000 in the form of surety by Judge Mumcy Dlamini who warned him to adhere to the bail conditions.
Mncina, who was represented by Mbabane-based lawyer Sabelo ‘Chicken’ Dlamini in his papers submitted that he was arrested by the Royal Eswatini Police Service (REPS) from Mbabane on Tuesday and subsequently charged with the offence of contravening the Pharmacy Act of 1929 for being allegedly found with the weed.
He submitted that he is a cattle farmer and a breadwinner in his family of 13, which includes his unemployed wife and two minor children.
“My parents are elderly and sick with a chronic illness and two of my nephews are school going and I also have six siblings. As a cattle , my
continued incarceration will not only be detrimental to myself but also to the well-being of my entire family,” he submitted.
He pleaded with the court that the best interest of justice favoured that he be afforded the relief he sought in the notice of motion, in particular because there is no prejudice to be suffered by anyone as he is advised and verily believes that the police have completed their investigations.
According to the charge sheet, Mncina is co-charged with 26-yearold Simisile Kunene and both accused are facing a total of two counts, with the first count being contravening the Pharmacy Act by being in illegal possession of the 143.3kg of dagga, while on the second count they are charged for contravening the Opium and Habit Forming Drugs Act of 1922 as they were found in illegal possession of 2.0kg of dagga seeds.
However, the second accused person (Kunene) was acquitted and discharged by the Mbabane Magistrate’s Court, as Mncina indicated that he will plead guilty to the charge at trial when his rights and pleas were put to him, while Kunene pleaded not guilty.