Durban - Molested at the age of 14, allegedly by a Durban priest, Mohamed Magid, now 27, is still haunted by his experience at the hands of a person he trusted.
Magid consented to being named in this article, saying he refused to be a victim and called for all others who had been through a similar ordeal to speak out.
Speaking to the Daily News from the UK, where he has moved, Magid said he returned to South Africa between May and June this year to lay criminal charges against the sheikh.
He said a family member referred him to the religious leader in 2007, for a talisman to deal with teenage behaviour problems. At the time, his parents were going through a divorce.
“This started from the day I arrived at this foundation. He told me that my problems were too big and that no prayer paper was going to help me and my family. He said I needed a specific, special treatment,” he said.
The priest allegedly told Magid that he needed to fix him “down there”, and that if the teen trusted him, his dreams of becoming a sportsman, being wealthy and having a united family would be realised.
“He said I needed to follow him and believe that he was my sheikh. I should allow him to do whatever he wanted with my body and whatever he told me to do, even if he told me to jump off a building. He warned me that the punishment for talking to people about the treatment was death,” Magid said.
On day two of the “treatment”, he said, the priest performed lewd acts while pinning him down.
“The moment his hands touched me, I said ‘No, I want to go. Stop, enough,’ but he continued, clicked his tongue, shook his head and said ‘no’ to me in a rough way.
“I tried to get out of there, but he used force to keep me locked down. He rubbed his hands all over my thighs and all over my private parts. It was the most painful time of my life, having to endure this. It’s upsetting and it’s both physically and mentally draining as I have to relive that night over and over again,” he said.
Magid told his parents about his ordeal, and has been treated by psychologists. The Daily News has seen a letter confirming this. Magid’s uncle, Cassim Malani, said the family had been left devastated.
“Mohamed is trying hard to move on, but this attack has scarred him for life. When a child refuses to attend a particular mosque, church or temple, parents should find out why.”
Faizel Kara, the priest’s attorney, would only say that the matter was sub judice.
Police spokesperson Colonel Thembeka Mbele said a case of sexual assault had been opened at Sydenham police station and the matter was under investigation.