The Department of Correctional Services and the police are on the hunt for a convicted rapist and kidnapper who escaped before a consultation with a dietician at the Mamelodi Regional Hospital.
The department’s spokesperson, Singabakho Nxumalo, stated on Monday that Clatta Gumbo attacked and disarmed a guard before making his way out of the hospital.
At the time of the escape, Gumbo was serving a life sentence for rape, kidnapping, and assault at Baviaanspoort Correctional Centre in Tshwane.
Life sentence for rape and assault
“The Department of Correctional Services, working with other law-enforcement agencies, is conducting a widespread search operation to locate and apprehend offender Clatta Gumbo, who escaped on Monday from the grounds of Mamelodi Regional Hospital,” Nxumalo said.
“Admitted as an offender on August 28 2018, Gumbo is serving a life sentence for rape, kidnapping, and assault at Baviaanspoort Correctional Centre in Tshwane.
“He was escorted to the hospital for a consultation with a dietician when he attacked the guarding official, disarmed him, and escaped from the hospital premises.”
The department has launched an investigation into the circumstances surrounding Gumbo’s escape.
“Immediate action has been taken to initiate a thorough investigation into the circumstances surrounding the escape.
Over 500 jail breaks
“Correctional services is appealing to anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of the escapee to contact the nearest correctional facility or a police station.
“Crucially, we encourage members of the public to remain vigilant and report any suspicious activity to law-enforcement authorities.
“Public safety is our utmost priority, and every effort is being made to effect the rearrest of Gumbo.”
The Bloemfontein Correctional Contracts (BCC) said in court papers in 2023 that there had been 519 escapes from other prisons across the country in the past 10 years.
The BCC is the company that hired G4S to run operations at the Mangaung Correctional Centre in Bloemfontein. This is where convicted rapist and murderer Thabo Bester escaped in May 2022.