THE State’s star witness in the rape trial of televangelist Walter Magaya, Petronella Donhodzo Mandaza, has sensationally claimed she will not be forced to lie under oath and vowed not to avail herself to testify against the Prophetic Healing and Deliverance (PHD) leader.
BY CHARLES LAITON
Mandaza, who last year claimed she had been sexually abused by Magaya, said in her latest application to the High Court that Prosecutor-General (PG) Ray Goba was forcing her to testify against the cleric, despite her confessions that she was never raped and never fell pregnant at any stage.
Magaya is expected to stand trial next Tuesday at the High Court, but Mandaza said she will never be forced to attend the proceedings and lie against the clergyman.
In her application, seeking to be excused from attending trial filed at the High Court on Thursday this week, Mandaza said she was contemplating approaching the Law Society of Zimbabwe (LSZ) to seek Goba’s disciplinary hearing and also an order compelling the PG to personally pay the cost of the litigation.
“In this application, I seek the following: To indicate to the court that I will not be appearing in court on April 3, 2018, or on any other day for purposes of testifying against second respondent (Magaya), to put Ray Goba on notice that I will be taking up action against him should he continue his attempt to suborn perjury,” Mandaza said, adding “to have Goba personally reimburse the costs that I have incurred in bringing this application. I also seek that he reports to the LSZ for it to inquire into his conduct”.
Mandaza further said although Magaya had been summoned to stand trial, it was at the instance of Goba, who was insisting on having him tried on an offence he never committed.
“Second respondent is charged with my rape, unlawful termination of pregnancy and obstructing course of justice. The charges arise from false allegations which I made against him before he was indicted for trial. I made a clean breast and indicated to the first respondent (Goba) that I had falsely accused the second respondent of raping me,” Mandaza said.
The witness said her confession was the subject of a series of correspondences in which the PG insisted to put her on the witness stand.
“For the reasons that I still do not appreciate, first respondent decided to ignore that confession and proceeded to seek second respondent’s committal to trial. I am obviously the star witness given that the allegations are that I was raped and made to terminate a pregnancy. I wish to make it categorically clear that I was never raped by the second respondent and I have never been pregnant all my life,” she said.
“He (Goba) has instead chosen to become a tool of use in the hands of certain criminally minded people. He too is behaving like an outlaw, totally unworthy of the high office that he occupies. I, therefore, regret that I am unable to appear in court in obedience to the subpoena which is irregular and invalid,” the witness said.
“I am mindful that the first respondent might oppose this application. I say so because he has shown unbridled malice in the whole matter. He has behaved in a way which has now made me question his sanity. I obviously say this with great deference and respect but I must call it as I see it. Further, whenever I have spoken to him he has sounded incoherent, unable to construct and follow through a thought process, drunk and under heavy influence of dangerous intoxicating drink. It maybe that it is his nature I do not know,” she said.
The matter is yet to be set down for trial.