Former Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko’s son, Siqokoqela, who was recently sentenced to 20 years in jail for rape and escaping from lawful custody, has filed an appeal against both conviction and sentence.
Siqokoqela who is being represented by Mr Zibusiso Ncube of Ncube and Partners and was convicted of three counts of rape and escaping from lawful custody, said the court’s decision was flawed as there were many inconsistencies.
“Take notice that the appellant hereby appeals against both conviction and sentence imposed by a regional magistrate, Mr Elijah Singano sitting at the Bulawayo magistrate’s court on the 4th of May 2023,” reads part of the appeal.
Siqokoqela said the court erred at law in improperly admitting evidence of the complainant that did not meet legal requirements for admissibility of proof of sexual complaints.
“The trial court grossly misdirected itself at law in arriving at the conclusion that the witnesses were credible when evidence was fraught with material inconsistencies going to the root of admissibility of evidence,” he said.
Siqokoqela also said the court erred at law in dismissing his defence without deliberating on the allegations.
“The court erred at law in arriving at the conclusion that the State had proved its case beyond reasonable doubt yet when given the totality of the evidence, the State failed dismally to do so,” he said.
Siqokoqela said the court had also imposed an unconscionable sentence.
He said he should be found not guilty and acquitted of all charges.
Siqokoqela was jailed for an effective 20-years after he was convicted of three counts of rape and escaping from lawful custody following a full trial.
In his ruling, Mr Singano said many of the victim’s constitutional rights were violated.
He said what was aggravating was that Siqokoqela had betrayed the victim’s trust and that of her family.
The State case was that sometime between May and August last year, Siqokoqela raped the 12-year old victim thrice.
On August 30 last year, at around 4.30pm Siqokoqela was arrested and taken to Hillside Police Station by Assistant Inspector Admire Donha.
While at the police station he was booked for detention after which he requested to get his medication from his motor vehicle which was parked outside.
He was then escorted by Constable Chimuka to his motor vehicle and upon arrival he jumped into his vehicle and sped off.