Omotoso trial: Judge rejects defence bid to appeal recusal ruling

2018-10-30 12:29
Pastoor Timothy Omotoso.

Pastoor Timothy Omotoso. (Foto: Lulama Zenzile)

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WATCH: Omotoso rape trial postponed to December 10

2018-10-30 11:40

The trial of rape-accused Nigerian pastor Timothy Omotoso is expected to continue in the Eastern Cape High Court. WATCH

The judge presiding over the rape trial of Nigerian pastor Timothy Omotoso has dismissed an application for leave to appeal a ruling rejecting a request that he recuse himself.

On Tuesday, Judge Mandela Makaula dismissed the pastor's legal team's application.

The defence wants him to recuse himself, claiming that he acted in a biased manner towards their client.

But on Tuesday, the judge said presiding over a case was not a game.

"It's not about a win or a lose, it is about justice," Makaula said.

Defence advocate Peter Daubermann asked the court to postpone the trial so he can petition the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA), which Makaula granted.

Omotoso and his two co-accused Lusanda Sulani and Zukiswa Sitho face 63 charges and 34 alternative charges, which include rape and sexual assault.

Makaula said the manner in which the application was brought was enough to dismiss it.

He cited an initial attempt by the defence to have the charges quashed on October 8.

He then cited Omotoso's refusal to plead and that the notice relating to his recusal was only being brought after the cross-examination of the first State witness Cheryl Zondi – which captured the South African public's attention.

"While her cross-examination continued, an application for my recusal was brought on notice of motion."

The application for leave itself was "convoluted", he continued. "It does [not] delineate questions of fact or those of law."

Makaula said he was of the view that there were no reasonable prospects of success on appeal, nor compelling reasons to show why he should grant the application for leave to appeal.

The trial has been postponed to December 10, 2018.

*This story has been updated since original publication.

Read more on:    timothy omotoso  |  port elizabeth  |  courts

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