Rape victims cry out for justice

2015-07-23 06:01
Themba Dumisane Mathibela

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Themba Dumisane Mathibela PHOTO: Facebook

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A Khayelitsha woman allegedly raped by Pastor Themba Dumisane Mathibela said she wants her baby back and that she is tired of the delays in the case.

She said she gave the child up for adoption at the insistence of the accused.

This, she stated in court, before yet another postponement at the Khayelitsha Magistrate Court.

The case was again postponed to 6th August 2015. Pastor Mathibela is facing seven counts of rape and is still out on R5000 bail. He appeared briefly at the Khayelitsha magistrate court last Wednesday.

He is accused of raping two women belonging to his congregation and aged between 20 and 25 years.

Pastor Mathibela was arrested in May last year and still maintains the sex was consensual.

Last month, the case was postponed after both complainants were not available due to mid-year school examinations. The state prosecutor told the court that although the matter was on the roll for a plea-bargain, they were not ready to proceed and the case was postponed for further consultation on the matter.

Magistrate Siviwe Yake called in the two victims and a state witness to inform them the matter has been postponed.

Thembakazi Xosa (25) is allegedly one of the rape victims. After she fell pregnant, she said she was forced to give up her baby for adoption.

In court, she said she misses her baby regardless of the circumstances the baby was conceived. “I did not want to give the child away. He made me sign the papers. He arranged for all this to happen and acted as my pastor and not the father of the child. Yes he raped me. He had asked me to abort the child but I refused”. Said Xosa.

It was also revealed that she has twice tried to commit suicide because of the stress of the case, but was rescued everytime she did so.

“I wanted to get out of this situation. I don’t feel well every time I have to attend this court case. I just want this case to be over. My mother is very sick in the Eastern Cape, and I don’t want this case to affect her health”. Thandokazi Sikhahla (20), the second complainant, said she feel nervous every time she has to attend court. Ncumisa Yangaphi, a community member said the community was eager to see the finalisation of the case. She said the case should set a precedent to people in authority to stop preying on innocent young women, thus abusing their trust. “We need to see justice served”.

The Khayelitsha Magistrate Court was filled to capacity as supporters of both the complainants and the accused packed the public gallery, but there were no immediate signs of animosity or tensions between both sides

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