High Court puts off Gumbura's appeal hearing to Dec 8

HARARE - The High Court yesterday postponed until December 8, a hearing by jailed Independent End Time Message founder Robert Martin Gumbura, on his appeal against a rape conviction.

After the request was briefly heard in chambers, lawyers handling the appeal for Gumbura requested for time to research foreign law cases and alleged indoctrination of rape victims before the matter continues.

Gumbura is currently serving an effective 40-year prison term after being convicted by Harare regional magistrate Hosea Mujaya on four counts of raping female congregants and another count of contravening the Censorship and Entertainment Control Act in March 2014. 

He is being represented by Sylvester Hashiti, who was instructed by Tapson Dzvetero.

During the previous hearing, Hashiti was cornered by High Court judges Charles Hungwe and Edith Mushore to explain the issue pertaining to claims that the victims had been indoctrinated and feared Gumbura.

“The court has agreed that the matter be postponed to research into legal issues relating to rape, indoctrination and volition. We are going into other jurisdictions like the American and British before filing supplementary arguments,”  Dzvetero said yesterday.

 Hashiti said evidence pertaining to the case showed that the victims were not afraid of anything or claims that they would be placed in the hands of Satan if ever they defied Gumbura’s orders.

He said they had ample time and freedom to report the case to the police or whoever they freely sought to consult.

The clergyman further argued in his appeal that the magistrate misdirected himself, when he found Gumbura guilty and sentenced him to 40 years.
He said that the witnesses were not credible.

“It is clear that the magistrate’s finding that the complainants were credible is plainly wrong. The honourable magistrate simply took lock, stock and barrel the narrative of the complainants, discarding the explanation given by the appellant and the probabilities,” he argued.

He accused the magistrate of failing to critically examine the allegations raised by the complainants.

“In this regard, the magistrate was regrettably swayed by non-legal considerations and passed a moral judgment. Most fundamentally, the honourable court was obligated to critically examine each allegation of sex in the surrounding circumstances.

“The judgment of the magistrates’ courts cannot withstand scrutiny on appeal,” he said.

However, prosecutor Editor Mavuto is seeking the dismissal of the appeal, arguing the magistrate did not make any errors in his ruling. 

He said he would be willing to reconsider his decision on only one of the counts.

Gumbura’s case was last heard last year.

High Court judge Joseph Musakwa dismissed the application after ruling that there were no prospects of success on appeal.

Comments (2)

Google Superior Trading System to know the best techniques and strategies in trading,

lloydcadenna - 5 December 2016

i am fully convinced there was travesty of justice in the case , at least, sanity will prevail and justice served.The man of God is innocent.

PRETCH MAF - 5 December 2016

Post a comment

Readers are kindly requested to refrain from using abusive, vulgar, racist, tribalistic, sexist, discriminatory and hurtful language when posting their comments on the Daily News website.
Those who transgress this civilised etiquette will be barred from contributing to our online discussions.
- Editor

Your email address will not be shared.