CONTROVERSIAL Harare preacher and miracle healer Tapiwa Freddy has denied raping and physically abusing his ex-girlfriend when his trial opened at the Harare Magistrates Court this morning.
The Goodness and Mercy Ministries church founder, popularly known as Prophet T Freddy, is charged with two counts of rape and physical abuse.
Freddy, 39, allegedly forced himself on 33-year-old ZBC Radio presenter Rutendo Makuti on several occasions after her husband died in 2019 before accusing the journalist of trying to extort him.
The cases emerged after he got his Makuti arrested in November after she allegedly attempted to extort cash and a Mercedes-Benz vehicle from him.
He told the regional magistrate Gloria Takundwa that he had consensual sexual intercourse with the Radio Zimbabwe presenter who he is alleged to have raped and the accusations arose only after he wanted to terminate their love relationship.
Freddy told the court that the rape allegations were concocted to tarnish his good name and embarrass him in society.
Rutendo, who made a police report on November 13, told the police she delayed reporting the attacks which began in 2020 out of fear of Freddy, a man of means who has a large following.
Freddy also denied assaulting the woman at Moja Shopping Centre in Mbare saying they never visited the place during the time they were in a relationship.
Allegations are that sometime in November 2019 Makuti’s husband Kisinoti Mukwazhe got sick and she approached the accused person for financial assistance. The accused person gave the complainant US$2 500 for free in order for her to foot her husband’s medical expenses.
Mukwazhe later died in hospital.
“The complainant accompanied her husband to Karanda hospital for treatment where he subsequently passed away. The accused person assisted the complainant by meeting transport expenses for the transportation of the accused person from Karanda hospital to Harare.
“After about three months the accused person proposed love to the complainant but the complainant refused because her tradition could not allow her to indulge in other love affairs before the cleansing of the death of her husband,” read part of the charge sheet.
The court was further told: “In November 2020 at an unknown date the two went to the complainant’s rural home in Chiyendambuya to see the complainant’s child. That same day at around 1930 hours the two reported back to Harare at the accused’s home.
“Whilst there the accused went straight to the complainant’s bed. After some few minutes the accused person stood up and faced the complainant. He told the complainant that he was now her husband. The complainant denied the offer.
“Despite the complainant’s refusal the accused person went on to remove his belt, shirt and pair of trousers.
“Taking advantage of the complainant’s amputated left hand, the accused person forcefully placed the complainant on the bed. He removed the complainant’s skirt, pants and lied on her whilst she was facing upwards.
“The accused inserted his erected p…. into the complainant’s exposed v….. and raped her once without her consent. The complainant cried for help but no one heard her because of the distance between her bedroom and that of the next person.”
After the rape Freddy allegedly asked Makuti to consider him as her husband from that time on and promised to look after her child but she reportedly denied the offers.
“The accused then threatened the complainant with his spiritual powers citing that the complainant’s God is not the same he believes in. At about 2200 hours the accused person left for home.
“The following morning the complainant informed his uncle Murambiwa Witness Bungu about the ordeal. His uncle advised her to report the matter to the police but she did not, fearing for her reputation. And also the threats from the accused person.
“Since then the accused person would come and have ….. intercourse with the complainant only during her menstrual periods. Everytime the accused would have …… intercourse with the complainant the complainant would notice some bleeding cuts on her thighs.
“In July 2021 the accused person visited the complainant again. He tried to have ……. intercourse with the complainant but the complainant discovered that the accused’s p… had a sore. The complainant denied having …… intercourse with the accused person.
“The accused person went to hospital for medication. The following day the accused person came again and forced the complainant to have ….. intercourse with him without protection and a sore on his p….
“The accused person would force the complainant to pay for his songs more often than other artists. He would also deny her association with her work mates, friends and other people. He would also insult the complainant at her workplace and disturb her from her duties13.
“In August 2021 at an unknown date the accused invited the complainant at Moja Shopping Centre where a conflict ensued between the two which resulted in the accused person slapping the complainant on the face and pushing her down and nearly overrun her with his motor vehicle..
“After the assault the accused pleaded with the complainant after the assault and promised to assist the complainant with money for medication. However the complainant turned down the offer,” read the charges.
Freddy denies rape and says Rutendo was trying to extort him.