Pretoria – Self-proclaimed prophet Shepherd Bushiri, who is wanted by courts in South Africa, insists there are moves by South African law enforcement agencies to kidnap him.
“We are extremely dismayed and astonishingly shocked by continuous intrusion into the private space of Prophet Shepherd Bushiri and also attempts to kidnap him by some recognisable security personnel from South Africa,” Bushiri’s spokesperson Ephraim Nyondo said.
“Through various tip-offs from well-wishers and our intelligence sources, we have it on record that these personnel from South Africa have been trailing the prophet, to the extent of following him everywhere he goes under the guise of working under the ‘embassy’.”
Nyondo said Bushiri has lately been through “a series of suspicious incidences that borders on his security to the point of involving the Malawi Police Service”.
“We wish to underline here that we are well aware of their plot: we know where they lodge, we know their communication links, we know their local collaborators and we know their movements. It is shocking to note that some of the personnel involved in this scheme are the very same people that Prophet Bushiri opened intimidation and extortion cases against in South Africa in 2018,” he said.
Nyondo said Bushiri “suffered immensely at the machinations of these people” while he lived in South Africa.
“The South African justice system failed to apprehend these people even after numerous criminal cases opened against them and also reporting them to various state security bodies. This, if you recall, is the reason the prophet left South Africa to seek justice in his home country and he is highly respectful of the court processes he is going through,” he said.
“We must underscore, here, that now that he is home and free, the Prophet will not be bullied and intimidated by these people in his home country the way they did in South Africa. Never.”
Apart from the rape allegations, Bushiri and his wife Mary are wanted in South Africa on fraud and money-laundering charges relating to an investment scheme valued at more than R100 million.
The ECG church leaders were arrested in South Africa but, after being granted bail, fled to Malawi, claiming they were not safe in their host country.
They were each released on R200 000 bail by the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court on November 4, 2020, after their arrest in October that year.