High Court dismisses Gumbura bail application

The High Court today denied bail to Independent End Time Message Church founder, Robert Martin Gumbura, in a case in which he is facing a fresh charge of raping a female congregate.

The development came after the State, led by Innocent Muchini, argued that Gumbura was likely to be convicted on the rape charge and would interfere with State witnesses if released.

The State argued as well that Gumbura was facing serious charges and his release would undermine public confidence in the justice delivery system.

Gumbura, who is facing nine other rape counts for allegedly raping six female members of his church, is set to stand trial on the latest rape charge on March 31 while judgement concerning the nine rape counts has been set for January 31.

In the latest rape case, the complainant, according to the State outline, is a 26-year-old woman who is resident in South Africa.

According to the State papers, the woman started staying at Gumbura’s house in 2009, a move that was agreed to by Gumbura and the woman’s parents.

Gumbura was responsible for the woman’s school fees and general upkeep.

The State alleges that in 2009, one Tendai Ganyani called the woman to Gumbura’s office and when she arrived, Ganyani went out and locked the door from outside, leaving Gumbura and the woman alone.

Gumbura is alleged to have demanded sex from the woman and she refused.

The State alleges that Gumbura removed his clothes, grabbed the woman and forcibly removed her clothes and after this, he pushed her on the floor.

After raping the woman, he allegedly threatened to curse her if she reported the matter to anyone.

At that time, the State alleges, the woman failed to report the case to the police for fear of being cursed and only did so on March 18 last year after having left the church.

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