Picture: Stefano Pollio/Unsplash
Cape Town - In one of three cases of men of God accused of raping their congregants, a Philippi mother says the justice system has failed her by dropping her case.

She had complained to police of repeated rapes by her pastor. The 29-year-old has spoken out for the first time, detailing to the Cape Times her long ordeal, over four years.

The traumatised woman said she had opened a case on August 8.

But at the end of the month, it was dropped. She said the recent case against televangelist Timothy Omotoso was part of the reason she decided to report it. 

The 60-year-old televangelist is on trial, accused of trafficking more than 30 girls and women from branches of his church to a house in uMhlanga, KwaZulu-Natal, where he is accused of sexually exploiting them.

The Philippi woman said she went to the House of Glory Ministries church in her area to find a place of healing as she was depressed after losing her mother.

She alleged that a bishop at the church repeatedly raped her, but officials ignored her case.

“The first time he raped me, I was staying at another church member’s house because I had no place to stay. He came into the room at around 2am, got into the bed and I got a fright when I felt someone in the bed next to me.

“I woke up and asked him what he was doing. He was forcefully trying to kiss me and next thing I knew he was on top of me.”

She said she did not tell anyone about the incident, fearing that she would not be believed.

“People always said he was such a good man and I would feel sick to my stomach because I thought to myself no good man would do what he did to me.”

She said she opened up about the rape after finding out she was pregnant.

“I went to many people for advice but I found out that everyone was just protecting him. People would say that he would never do anything like that.

“I became tired of that and eventually went to the police. I saw that these people were not trying to help me.”

Police spokesperson Andre Traut said the case was investigated, but was later withdrawn by the senior State prosecutor on August 30, because of insufficient evidence.

National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila said: “The prosecutor declined to prosecute as the State would not be in a position to successfully prosecute the matter.”

This as Omotoso, who faces 63 charges which include human trafficking, rape, sexual assault, racketeering and conspiracy in aiding another person to commit sexual assault appeared at the Port Elizabeth High Court yesterday.

His lawyer Peter Daubermann was harassed and followed to his car by a group of angry protesters.

The protesters were among the #TotalShutDown movement at court to support State witness Cheryl Zondi, 22, who was under cross-examination for the third day.

Protesters hurled comments at Daubermann calling him a “rubbish (for) defending a rapist”, they demanded that he drop the case and threatened that they knew where he lived.

Meanwhile, the Calcutta Magistrate’s Court in Mkhuhlu, Mpumalanga has granted bail of R10 000 to a local pastor accused of rape.

Pastor Abednigo Mongo, 28, was arrested this month and faces two counts of rape and one of assault for allegedly raping a 15-year-old girl who was a member of his church, the Prophetic Ministry of the Nations in Tshabalala near Hazyview.

Cape Times