Newton Kwaku Boateng, a 48-year-old Ghanaian businessman based in South Africa, died mysteriously after being poisoned to death in his own house in Gauteng Province.
According to reports from the deceased’s brother George Effah Boateng, he died on Thursday, March 2, 2023, after struggling to fight for his life after drunken a poisonous tea but no one could come to his aid despite attempts by his house help to come to his aid but were prevented by his wife Alinah Mahlangu, a South African national, while his cell phone was snatched from him, preventing him from calling for assistance.
His wife Alinah Mahlangu before reporting the incident to the Kempton Park police station in the Gauteng Province, the deceased’s Range Rover, which was parked in his garage, vanished to an unknown location, along with the deceased’s other valuable personal belongings, which were all taken from his flat.
When the Ghanaian community in South Africa learned of the mystery surrounding their countryman’s death, a delegation was dispatched to meet with the wife and question her about the cause of death.
According to the deceased wife’s narrations, the deceased died after taking a tea leaf, but a preliminary examination of the body revealed bruises and cuts around the neck and back, as well as signs of being strangled after being poisoned.
The inconsistencies in the deceased’s South African wife’s comments infuriated the Ghanaian community in South Africa, who suspected foul play and wrote to the High Commission, which wrote to the police on Tuesday 7th March 2023, asking for cooperation in the investigations.
She was also accused of secretly transporting Newton Kwaku Boateng’s body to a private funeral home without a police escort and without the knowledge of any family member or members of the Ghanaian community, which the family and the Ghanaian community in South Africa described as a very bad ploy to conceal the true truth from the public and called on the Ghanaian High Commission to intervene immediately.
Both the deceased’s family and the disgruntled Ghanaians have accused the deceased’s South African wife of suspected foul play, alleging a cover-up in collaboration with the police, as well as threats against those appointed to oversee the investigations, autopsy, and final conveyance of the body to Ghana.
Mr. George Effah Boateng, the deceased brother who lives in South Africa and was given power of attorney by the late Newton Kwaku Boateng’s family, has also gone into hiding to protect his life after receiving threats from some friends of his late brother’s wife and unknown persons.
Mr. Effah had previously expressed concerns about matters such as investigations and attempts by the wife to relocate the deceased’s body from the funeral home into an unknown mortuary while investigations were ongoing, which were vehemently opposed by the family, resulting in threats to his life.
The late Newton Kwaku Boateng’s brother believes his relative was murdered, and that the wife is a major suspect, but that she is working to prevent the family from gathering information, particularly the autopsy report, which indicates the cause of death.
She later held a memorial service on March 9, 2023, without the consent of the family or the Ghanaian community, a decision that was condemned by the Ghanaian community in South Africa.
Mr. Godwin Attipoe, head of the family of the late Newton Boateng explained that “We are completely devastated and enraged. We are heartbroken and demand justice for our brother, whose life was taken under mysterious circumstances, while law enforcement agencies, rather than exposing the truth, are now attempting to shield and cover up the perpetrators “.
He revealed that the South African police have been making excuses for weeks after Newton Kwaku Boateng’s death, claiming that they are still investigating the incident even though it occurred in his own flat and that autopsy results are pending.
“We have been denied several attempts to obtain the autopsy report to determine what could have caused the death of our brother by the wife, who is in collusion with the police, and would call on the Ghana High Commission in South Africa to assist the family in supervising the autopsy on the deceased, which the South African police and the wife have refused,” Mr. Godwin Attipoe added.
Mr. Richard Kweku Boateng, a cousin of the deceased based in the United States of America, reiterated that the family has not authorized the wife Alinah Mahlangu, or any of her accomplices to represent the family on the issue of acquiring the autopsy report or burying their relative in South Africa, and would like to request that the Ghanaian High Commission in South Africa intervene by mediating and ensuring that the autopsy report is completed and subsequently conveying the body to Ghana for burial.
Mr. Richard Boateng emphasized that the family also warned the deceased’s wife to stop plotting to overturn and possibly cause of death of their relative, as they had been reliably informed of allegedly colluding with the South African investigative body in charge of the case to destroy the dockets, as there had been threats from the deceased’s wife to some family members to stop requesting an autopsy report.
“Even though the Ghana High Commission in South Africa has given us the initial backing with letters to see to the murder investigations, autopsies play an extremely important role in medical malpractice lawsuits because they provide detailed information about the cause of death and will urge that the commission come to the side of the family at this crossroads; legally, autopsies are only required under certain circumstances, including if there is suspicion of foul plundering,” Mr. Attipoe filed an appeal.
If someone dies but is not under the care of a medical professional, an autopsy may be ordered.
The official cause of death for the deceased in this case is unknown. However, the family stated that they still have unanswered questions.