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Fake prophet forces church member at close point

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A self-syled Nkayi prophet allegedly forced a woman at close point inside a church after “prophesying” that her relatives were making her sleep with a monkey, a court heard yesterday.

Cuthbert Dube, 32, allegedly told the 23-year-old victim that her womb was damaged as a result of the supernatural contact. When he saw that his words were not having an effect, Dube allegedly abandoned the word of God and grabbed the woman.

The court heard how he dragged her into Agape Church where he produced a knife that he used to threaten the woman before forcing her. He was arrested the following day at his homestead where scores of women were queuing to receive “holy anointing” from him.

The woman’s sister-in-law identified him as the man who had passed by their homestead asking for water to drink, a day before he forced the woman. Dube appeared before regional magistrate Chrispen Mberewere yesterday and pleaded not guilty to rape.

He told magistrate Mberewere that he did not know the woman and had travelled out of the village on the day the woman alleged she was forced. The victim took to the stand as the first State witness and told the court that Dube followed her on a narrow pathway leading to the Agape Church.

“As I was about to pass the church gate, I saw Dube and he greeted me and immediately went into a trance.

“He started prophesying that my relatives were forcing me to sleep with a monkey and that my womb had problems,” said the woman.

“As I drew closer to him, he grabbed me and took me inside the church, leaving his bicycle outside. I screamed and he took out a knife and threatened to kill me if I made any noise.”

The woman said Dube forced her to lie down and undressed her.

“He then forced me once and told me to continue with my journey. When I got home I notified my sister-in-law,” she said.

Another witness told the court that Dube was arrested while prophesying on a number of women.

“When he saw us coming, he produced a knife but we managed to apprehend him.

“He admitted to forcing her and asked us to not assault him as he was ready to compensate her family with a beast,” he said.

“We took him to the police station and asked him to identify the woman he had raped and he pointed at the victim.

“Other villagers even told us that Dube was very dangerous but we managed to subdue him.”

In his defence, Dube maintained that he did not know any of the witnesses and denied prophesying on anyone. He asked the force victim why she stopped to listen to a prophecy from someone she did not know.

Magistrate Mberewere remanded him in custody to May 28. Trust Muduma for the state told the court that on March 24 at around 12noon, the woman was on her way to Tsheli Business Centre to purchase airtime recharge cards.

Muduma said she met Dube who grabbed her and produced a knife threatening to stab her if she resisted. He said Dube dragged her into the church and raped her once. After the sexual assault, the court heard, Dube threatened to kill the woman if she revealed the matter to anyone.

The woman reported the matter to police the following day and was referred to hospital for medical examination.

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