IN COURT: George Nyandi

Cops appeal for information on suspect traditional doctor

Police have appealed for the public’s assistance with information that could help convict a Tanzanian traditional doctor suspected to have swindled victims of large sums of money.

George Thomson Nyandi (49) was in court last week after he was said to have masqueraded as a traditional healer to defraud a Francistown man of P120 000.


Tanzanian national George Thomson Nyandi appeared in court in Francistown last week charged with obtaining by pretence in a case where he and two accomplices were said to have conned a local petrol pump attendant out of P120 000.

Unami Madatha claimed that three men who claimed to be traditional doctors conned him out of money he had inherited from his late mother.

Nyandi’s alleged accomplices were still at large as the State attempted to prove its case against the Tanzanian. His defence lawyer however argued that there was no evidence to implicate his client and that there was no law preventing him from practising as a traditional doctor in Botswana.

In an attempt to gain more evidence against Nyandi, Francistown police have appealed to members of the public who may have had dealings with the accused to come forward with information.

In court presiding magistrate Molema said: “The pattern in jurisdiction is that police officers now arrest and then investigate instead of investigating and then arresting. Due to the seriousness of the charge the bail conditions for the accused are such that he should surrender all his travel documents to the police, have two sureties each paying P5 000, stay at his house in Maruapula, and report to Broadhurst police station twice a week.”

The magistrate made the bail ruling after Nyandi’s lawyer had   argued successfully that he had proven to the State that he was in this country legally, and that he resided in Gaborone with his family.

“He has been a resident of Botswana since 2010 and prosecution has failed to bring forward any evidence to show that the accused committed the offence in question. The accused also did not deny any knowledge of where the other suspect is nor that the two are linked,” argued attorney Mishingo Jeremia.

Meanwhile Kutlwano Police station commander Motsholathebe Mothibi said Nyandi’s case was to his knowledge the first of its kind where a victim had been defrauded of such a massive amount of cash in a case involving a traditional doctor.

“Although it is a first I believe there could be many other people out there who have fallen victim to the same man. Probably they felt ashamed and helpless to report the matter to the police.  These are the people we are asking to assist us to nail this man. We expect more reports from the public after this one,” Mothibi said.

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