Tendai Rupapa Senior Court Reporter—
A HARARE woman who claimed to have been raped by Prophetic Healing and Deliverance Ministries leader Prophet Walter Magaya has officially filed papers with the Prosecutor-General’s office and the Zimbabwe Republic Police dropping the charges. She also communicated her decision to Prophet Magaya’s lawyer. The woman had initially not followed the correct procedure to withdraw the charges. She reportedly sneaked the papers into Harare magistrate Mr Vakayi Chikwekwe’s office under the door.
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Mr Chikwekwe dismissed the purported withdrawal of the charges, citing failure to follow court procedure. Prosecuting, Mr Sebastian Mutizirwa professed ignorance of the origins of the affidavit then.
He said if the complainant intended to withdraw charges against Prophet Magaya, she was supposed to go to the police or the AG’s office.The woman later followed procedure and served all the parties the relevant papers, which included two affidavits and a letter.
In a letter accompanying the withdrawal affidavit addressed to the acting PG, the woman indicated that no one had forced her to withdraw the charges. She vowed never in her entire life to pursue the case again.
“I make reference to the rape case which is pending before the courts against Prophet Walter Magaya. I have since filed a withdrawal affidavit which I am aware might have been misconstrued. I have since prepared a clear cut withdrawal affidavit,” said the woman. “I have freely and voluntarily withdrawn this criminal complaint against Walter Magaya. I have not been unduly influenced at all and this decision is mine and mine alone,”read the letter.
She urged the relevant authorities to respect her decision.
“I do not wish to proceed with it at all and never in my entire time. For the avoidance of doubt and to protect the integrity of the withdrawal affidavit, as well as my own integrity, I will inform the police and the accused’s lawyers,” she said.
The date stamps on the letter show all the parties were served last Friday. In another affidavit dated November 17, the complainant said the threats she received from unknown ‘forces’ that wanted Magaya jailed were not the main cause of her decision.
“I want to correct any misguided misconception or misguided inferences that the referred threats are the prime cause of the withdrawal. Far from it, this withdrawal is motivated by my own free will and volition without any undue influence having been brought to bear,” she said.
“This is my personal decision not influenced by anybody or anything whatsoever. I understand the legal implications of such a withdrawal to the extent that I will never ever approach the courts with the same matter,” read the certified affidavit.
In her withdrawal affidavit, the woman claimed there were “forces” who wanted Magaya jailed. She narrated how she had receiving death threats from unknown people ordering her to ensure Magaya was convicted and jailed.
“I have received threats from people who are threatening to shoot me in the event that I do not testify well in order to get the accused convicted, if by any chance I decide to withdraw the matter. “I then realised that if I do not win this case or do not do what they expect me to do, my life is in danger. I have come to the conclusion that this case is now beyond me,” reads part of the affidavit.
The woman claimed she had not lived a normal life since the commencement of the case in August.
“I have also come to understand that a greater evil are the people outside this matter that want me to get the accused convicted, even if it means adding lies to my testimony in court. I am not able to go through with this case,” she said. “I cannot testify under these conditions in court knowing that I have to perform in a way that these people who are threatening me desire.”
She said Magaya had no influence in her decision to withdraw the case, neither had he contacted or paid her. “Please note that I was not forced by anyone to withdraw my case. It should be noted that at the time of the withdrawal, the accused has not contacted me or given me money to withdraw. I did this out of my own free will,” reads the affidavit.
The final decision on whether to set Magaya free or not now lies with the PG’s office since it must determine the route a case follows. Magaya will be back in court on November 30 following the dismissal of his application for refusal of further remand.
Magaya is represented by Messrs Everson Chatambudza, Admire Rubaya and Oliver Marwa.