The Cheryl Zondi Foundation hit back at the COSA, accusing the religious party of lying and running a deliberate smear campaign. Picture: Raahil Sain / ANA

Pretoria - The Cheryl Zondi Foundation on Thursday hit back at the Christians of South Africa (COSA), accusing the religious party of lying and running a deliberate smear campaign to discourage Zondi from continuing with her case at the Eastern Cape High Court in Port Elizabeth.

"As the CZF we find the untruthful lies to have been released at an opportune time when Cheryl Zondi is supposed to go back to court to tell her story again. 

"The lies that have been perpetuated are a deliberate smear campaign that aims to discourage Cheryl from continuing with the case," deputy chairperson of the CZF board, Thoko Xaluva-Mkhwanazi said.

"It is secondary victimisation of a survivor in the hands of so-called 'men of God' in defence of one of their own. Cheryl will not be silenced, intimidated and scared through lies that are being peddled by people who do not deserve to be called Christians let alone leaders of Christians."  

Earlier on Thursday, the COSA led by Pastor Derrick Mosoana held a media briefing in Arcadia, Pretoria - making a litany of accusations against Zondi, including that she was a "slay queen" and "a criminal". 

"The Christians of South Africa is once again vindicated that the glorified victim of the Reverend Timothy Omotoso case is nothing but a well-established criminal that lives on the suffering of real victims of gender-based violence and uses it to fund a lavish lifestyle. 

"It has come to our attention that the funds donated by National Lottery and other cheerful givers to the Cheryl Zondi Foundation under the guise of helping victims of sexual abuse by so-called ‘evil’ pastors in South Africa has been plundered to finance 'slay queen' lifestyles," Mosoana told journalists. 

"The glorified victim is once again proving to the nation that she cannot be trusted, and she is a proven liar whose testimony should not be trusted and must be rejected. 

"We are calling for public opening of all accounts of the Cheryl Zondi Foundation since it was registered as a public entity and everyone must have access to it. We are calling for a criminal investigation against the glorified victim and all involved in the plunder of the funds aimed for genuine victims." 

Mosoana challenged the CZF to "come clean on how many victims they have helped so far, and how they have plundered the allocated funds".

"It is clear from their motto that from the day they decided to establish their foundation their primary objective was to turn people’s pain into their own personal gain.

"Cheryl Zondi needs to be delivered from her slay-queen addiction. Gender-based violence leaves victims with permanent scars that they will take to the grave, and for a cherry of Cheryl's nature to profit out of this genuine pain is a worse satanic initiation ever witnessed," Mosoana added. 

In response, a visibly upset Xaluva-Mkhwanazi told African News Agency that Cheryl Zondi and the Cheryl Zondi Foundation "reserves every right to lay appropriate and relevant charges against Pastor Derrick Mosoana and his organisation".

African News Agency (ANA)