DURBAN - A 29-year-old woman who spent nearly six years in prison for a crime she did not commit is considering suing the Department of Justice.
Nolubabalo Nomsuka was convicted of murdering her newborn child, despite an autopsy report proving otherwise.
Two months ago, that conviction was set aside.
Nomsuka was a grade 11 pupil in 2011 and was eight months pregnant when she went into labour at Wema Hostel, south of Durban, with nobody to assist her.
Nomsuka gave birth on her own, but the baby fell to the ground and when neighbours eventually came to assist her, the child had already died.
Community members accused the grieving woman of strangling the infant.
She was charged with murder and convicted, despite a doctor's testimony that the baby's body showed no signs of strangulation.
Nomsuka's lawyer said the magistrate disregarded that evidence and she was initially sentenced to life imprisonment.
“I missed out on spending time with my family. I lost my brother. I was unable to raise my child, who did not recognise me when I was released from prison. She was three-years-old when I was arrested, she was nine when I was released,” Nomsuka added.
Locked in a cell, she did not bury or properly grieve her son.
Her appeal was finally heard in November 2017.
Now she wants real justice.
“Since I spent five years and five months in jail for something I didn’t do, I want to sue the state for wrongful arrest.”
Her legal aid lawyer says the appeal case was easy.
Two judges who presided over her appeal lambasted the trial magistrate for disregarding crucial evidence by an experienced pathologist, who conducted the post-mortem.
Nomsuka completed her matric in prison and is now studying towards a business degree.