MASVINGO- A member of the Johane Marange apostolic sect has appeared in court facing rape charges after he allegedly raped a 12 year girl he had taken in as his fourth wife.
This came out in court during the trial of Vote Mashavira (38) before Masvingo Regional Magistrate, Bishard Chineka for rape.
Mashavira was remanded out of custody to 7 February for continuation of trial.
Mashavira pleaded not guilty and is being represented by Knowledge Mabvure of Chihambakwe Law Chambers.
In denying the charges Mashavira told the court that he did not rape the minor although he was customarily married to her.
Mashavira is alleged to have raped the minor since August last year in his two roomed house he stays with his wives.
“She is my other wife’s young sister, and an agreement was reached between me and her parents that we pay for her education until she turns 18.
“After that she will become my 4th wife since her sister is failing to conceive. It was in August when this arrangement was made,” Mashavira told the court.
He further told the court that the matter is being fabricated by his first wife and her brother in order to conceal an extramarital affair his second wife (victim’s sister) once had.
“I did not rape the child, but it’s a planned thing between my brother in law and my second wife, l found them discussing it when l came home the day she then complained about rape.
“l also had an argument with the sister, she was cheating on me and I suspect that was the other reason for the accusation, the allegations are fabricated,” added Mashavira in court.
However, prosecutor Liberty Hove told the court that Mashavira had consented sex with the minor since he had taken her in custody for procreation.
The court also heard that the matter only came to light after Mashavira had an altercation with the victim’s sister over adultery allegations and why she seemed to turn away from his church doctrine and principles.
The heated arguments resulted in the sister notifying his elder brother on what was happening leading to a police report being made.
The minor was taken for medical examination and medical report will be produced as evidence in court.