nandipha, thabo bester

A video of an unchained Dr Nandipha Magudumana has gone viral.
Images via Twitter: @iammzilikazi

Pretty privilege? SAPS responds to Nandipha viral video [watch]

Excuses? A video of an uncuffed Dr Nandipha Magudumana walking outside court has been justified by police…

nandipha, thabo bester

A video of an unchained Dr Nandipha Magudumana has gone viral.
Images via Twitter: @iammzilikazi

A viral video of Nandipha Magudumana seen outside court without handcuffs has gone viral. But police have insisted they have done nothing wrong.

The celebrity aesthetics doctor and her convicted criminal boyfriend, Thabo Bester, along with seven others, appeared at the Bloemfontein Magistrates Court on Tuesday, 20 June.

The nine accused face charges ranging from assisting a convicted criminal to escape from custody to tampering with a corpse, fraud, and defeating the ends of justice.

The accused will appear again in court on 8 August, pending further investigation.

ALSO READ: Prison glow? Bester wears Louis Vuitton, Nandipha rocks new hair


Since her arrest in Tanzania in March, Dr Nandipha has been accused of being on the receiving end of “pretty privilege.”

According to social media users, this includes allegations that Nandipha;

  • Was granted the opportunity to appear virtually and not in person in court
  • Received “sympathy” over her involvement with Thabo Bester
  • Appeared as a victim of domestic abuse in the relationship
  • Had access to beauty and hair salons while in prison custody
thabo bester, nandipha
Dr Nandipha and Thabo Bester appeared at the Bloemfontein Magistrates Court on 20 June 2023. Images via Twitter: @sli_masikane/ @chriseldalewis

This week, social media users called out Nandipha once again after a clip of her walking beside a police vehicle without hand and foot cuffs went viral.

In the clip, Thabo Bester’s girlfriend – classified as a flight risk –  is seen casually walking beside a female police officer as she enters the Bloemfontein Magistrates Court.

ALSO READ: Why Nandipha made virtual court appearance

Investigative journalist Mzilikazi wa Afrika tweeted a clip of the video, tagging SAPS. He posted: “You can fool some of the people all of the time and all of the people some of the time. But you can not fool all of the people all of the time.”


Following the video’s backlash, SAPS issued a statement justifying their actions. 

Brigadier Athlenda Mathe said of Dr Nandipha: “Given the suspect profile, she is escorted at all times when attending court by highly trained and skilled members who only respond to medium and high-risk incidents. As is seen in the video, she is being escorted closely by a TRT female member.”

ALSO READ: ‘Psychopath’: Nandipha dragged over court giggles [watch]

Mathe added that Nandipha – like all persons in custody – was not required to be handcuffed while in the back of a patrol van. This, allegedly to avoid injuries during transportation.

She continued: “SAPS vans are equipped with a secure canopy at the back to accommodate persons in custody. The canopy is equipped with padlocks and is at all times locked with the padlock when persons of high-risk profiles are being transported.

ALSO READ: Librarian chic? Nandipha makes another glam appearance [photos]

“Our vans are thoroughly searched before a person in custody is transported. The search focuses on removing unwanted objects or instruments which can cause a person to harm himself/herself or escape.”