10 December 2009

South Africa: Pastor Accused of Raping His Ten-Year-Old Stepdaughter

A doctor is expected to tell the Khayelitsha Regional Court how an 11-year-old child suffered after allegedly being raped by her stepfather, who is also a pastor, when his trial commences next year January.

The 11-year-old child, who cannot be named to protect her identity, was allegedly raped by her stepfather on June 2 this year, and told not to tell anyone or else he would kill her.

The incident happened when her mother was away for the night.

The girl, who presented testimony in camera with only media present, and via CCTV, said on the night in question her stepfather called her to come share his bedroom.

"I was scared and did not know what was going to happen when he called me into the bedroom. I told him it was painful but he would not listen," said the girl, who was ten-years-old at the time of the alleged incident.

She said despite her stepfather's warning that he would kill her if she told anyone, she could not keep her terrible secret and told a friend at school about it the next day.

However, her friend was also afraid to tell an adult about the incident, but the girl eventually told social workers when they paid a visit to her school six days later.

She said before the alleged rape her relationship with her stepfather was "good".

"He was not assaulting or shouting at me," she said.

Representing himself, the accused asked the court why, if he had raped her with his "big" penis, she had not bled or sustained any injuries.

Presiding magistrate Gaynor De Wee answered that a doctor would present evidence that she suffered internal injury and reminded him that she had only been examined days after the alleged rape.

The accused also asked her if she remembered the day the alleged rape occurred and what clothes he was wearing, to which she replied: "no".

The accused said he had never called her to come to his bedroom on the night in question and had only called her the following morning when he was going to work, when he asked her to close the door of the house properly because it was faulty.

De Wee postponed the case until January 20, 2009.

The man, who was arrested on October 7, remains in custody.

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