Masvingo — A self-proclaimed prophet endured six hours as a hostage to a man who demanding prayers and the delivery of a prophecy, a local court heard Wednesday.
Machoko Chinyenye pleaded guilty to kidnapping charges when he appeared before a Masvingo magistrate Takawira Mugabe.
In mitigation, Chinyenye told the court that he committed the offence in anger after "man of God" Wiseman Marara told his congregants that he (Chinyeye) would not prosper until he disowns a snake at his homestead.
The remarks were allegedly made during one of Marara's sermons at Chitava village in Nyajena.
Chinyenye told court that he had intended to release Marara after he had proven his prophecy. He was however, was sentenced to 12 months in prison for the crime.
Prosecutor Edmund Mapope told the court that on 2 October this year, and at around 10 am, Chinyenye approached Marara who was in the company of congregant Miriam Ngundu.
Chinyere told the prophet that he wanted him to conduct a prayer session at his homestead.
Court heard that Chinyenye grabbed the prophet's trousers by the waist in full view of the public and dragged him towards his homestead.
Upon arrival, Chinyenye pushed the prophet into a kitchen hut and locked the it from outside before ordering Marara to conduct a prayer to prove his prophecy.
Court heard that Chinyenye stood guard at the kitchen entrance armed with an axe, and a sjambok, threating to assault the prophet if he tried to break free without completing the task.
Marara was rescued in the evening at around 1800 hours after a report was made to the police by congregant Ngundu who had seen Chinyenye forcibly dragging the prophet to his house.