Pastor Timothy Omotoso, 58, is currently facing a string of charges including rape, and the alleged trafficking of more than 30 girls and women. One of his victims spoke up in court and detailed the sexual assault she suffered in his hands.
22-year-old Cheryl Zondi who is the first witness to testify against Nigerian pastor Timothy Omotoso, who is accused of the rape and human trafficking of young female congregants of his Durban-based church, disclosed that the Nigerian Pastor sexually abused her over a period of two-and-a-half years while she was a member of the Jesus Dominion International Church.
She told the Port Elizabeth High Court on Monday that at the time she was sexually assaulted by the pastor she believed God was on his side.
While being cross-examined by Peter Daubermann, Zondi was asked about her first encounter with the televangelist at his mission house in Durban.
According to victim, she was 14-years-old at the time she claims the incidents started. The defence for Omotoso has also been called out over some of the questions he asked Zondi. “Why didn’t you scream during the alleged sexual attack?” This was one question put to her.
However Cheryl Zondi who answered the question, even if she screamed for help nobody would have intervened. She said that at the time, she thought God would be on Omotoso’s side in committing a sexual assault.
Zondi who disclosed that she was young and impressionable, disclosed that she was too scared to oppose Omotoso because anyone who opposed him would die, so she allowed him to continue.
Zondi said she was scared and the girls in the house were loyal to Omotoso. She further explained why she did not dare to object to his advances, saying she was shocked and confused and just said to him: “I just have to get used to the way things work in this house.”
he teenager explained that she knelt beside Omotoso who was in his bed under the sheets. She said he signalled for her to sit next to him on the bed.
She detailed the sexual assault, claiming that Omotoso hugged her tightly, pulled on her bra strap and pushed her on the bed. Zondi said while she was fully clothed she felt his erect penis between her thighs. She told the court that she did not resist and was aware that she was being sexually attacked and knew that such behaviour was wrong.
Dauberman asked Zondi:
You were in a room alone with a man. You say you were scared. What did you think was going to happen? Didn’t you wonder why the door was locked?
Zondi replied that it was scary but it was also a privilege because Omotoso was thought to be a man of God. She said she wanted him to be her musical mentor and thought that he would train her.
At night, Zondi said she was again summoned to his room where she thought she would definitely get raped.
I thought he would rape me and I should allow him to do what he wanted to do. I did not want to face the wrath of God, said Zondi.
This time she was instructed to remove her clothing, and Zondi said Omotoso penetrated her slightly but was careful not to go all the way. She further described him rubbing himself against her genital area until he climaxed.
Here is a live feed of the trial;