THE trial of Goodness and Mercy Ministries founder, Tapiwa Freddy continued with an audio in which a man believed to be Freddy is begging the complainant not to report the matter to the police.
ZBC Radio Zimbabwe presenter Rutendo Makuti who lives with a disability accuses Tapiwa Freddy of allegedly taking advantage of the illness and subsequent death of her husband, to stalk and then rape her.
The trial which kicked off on Thursday continued this Friday with the state playing a one hour 38-minute-long audio recording in which Freddy allegedly met Makuti and her aunt in Chendambuya discussing the way forward on the alleged rape case.
In the audio, a man believed to be Freddy is heard repeatedly begging the radio presenter not to report the matter to the police opting for an out of court settlement.
Freddy is also heard in the audio begging for forgiveness from Makuti and describing the issue at hand as very sensitive.
In his defence through his legal representative, Freddy initially argued that it was premature to use that audio as evidence before questioning the authenticity of the video.
Freddy is facing two counts of rape and one of assault and Makuti testified this Thursday that she was threatened with a spiritual curse if she refused.
The court heard that Freddy told Makuti that even if she reports the case, it was going to suffer a still birth since he was connected to officials from the Zimbabwe Republic Police and the National Prosecuting Authority.
On Thursday, Makuti told the court how T Freddy raped her with a gun visibly placed on his shoes.
“On August 15, 2019 my husband (name withheld) who has been ill for a long time became serious and we had no money.
“On August 16 I talked to Prophet Freddy since he knew about my husband’s illness. I then asked him for financial assistance and he gave me US$2 500.
“I took my husband to Karanda Hospital before he died on August 17. Freddy assisted us with a coffin and transport from Karanda.
“He was assisting me as a church leader and whom we knew at my workplace,” Makuti said.
Makuti told the court that she visited Freddy sometime in January 2020 with intentions to thank him for the assistance he had rendered her.
“After three months, he started proposing love to me saying you are now glowing. He said since my husband had passed away he could take care of my child.
“I turned down his proposal and told him that it was a taboo in our culture to have an affair before a year had passed.
“During that time he appeared to have agreed with me. After sometime, he continued proposing love from me saying he was afraid that someone would snatch me.
“I then insisted that a year had not lapsed since my husband passed away and he suggested that we could be friends as we wait for the year to lapse,” the radio presenter said.
Makuti told the court that Freddy requested to visit her rural home in Chendambuya, Manicaland in November 2020 saying he wanted to assist her child with prayers since she was being stalked by evil spirits.
She agreed and they visited her rural home.
The woman told the court that Freddy allegedly raped her at her place upon their return from Chendambuya.
“When we returned, he went to sleep on the bed and placed his gun in one of his shoes. I asked him why he was on the bed and he came to stand in front of me.
“He told me that he was now my husband and he removed his shirt. He pressed me against his stomach and lifted me by the back and raped me.
“I was crying as he was forcing himself on me,” Makuti said.
She said after the sexual attack, Freddy apologised and wiped her tears with his palm. The woman told the court that Freddy threatened her saying he would cause her dismissal from work if she disclosed the incident to anyone.
Makuti said on the following morning, she discovered some cicatrix on her legs and called her uncle informing him of the sexual abuse.
Rutendo said after the incident, she later had a love affair with Freddy, which she said came as a result of fear from the threats she was receiving from her lover.
She also told the court how Freddy forced her into oral sex, taking advantage of her physical challenge.
Makuti further told the court that she never enjoyed her relationship with Freddy as he would emotionally and physically abuse her.