The rape trial of the leader of the Rivers of Living Waters church in Evaton, north of Sebokeng, has been postponed for two weeks in the Pretoria High Court.
Bishop Stephen Bafana Zondo is facing 10 charges ranging from rape and indecent assault to defeating the ends of justice.
Zondo claims that he is innocent:
Fifty-five-year-old Zondo terminated his advocate’s services last Wednesday, citing a loss of confidence. Today, advocate Piet Pistorius, informed the court of his appointment and asked for a postponement.
“Bishop Zondo briefly appeared in the Pretoria High Court where the matter was postponed to 14 September for his defence council to take instructions and consult with their client, which is Bishop Zondo after his previous council’s mandate was terminated. The state is ready to proceed,” says NPA Spokesperson, Lumka Mahanjana.
State advocate Jennifer Cronje told the court she reserves the right to ask the court to investigate any further delays in the case. She also says she may ask the court to withdraw Zondo’s warning if there are more unnecessary delays.
Zondo is out on a warning after he was arrested on the charges against him. He is accused of raping members of his congregation after allegedly luring them to his office under the pretence of wanting to pray for them.
One of the victims was allegedly raped in the 1980s when she was a young girl. A trial date will be set when the parties meet in court again in September.