By Staff Reporter
An overseer at a Faith in God Ministries Church in Harare appeared in court Wednesday facing rape charges on his 10-year-old niece who lived under his custody.
Dennis Mpondo, 54, briefly appeared before Harare magistrate, Marewanazvo Gofa who remanded him in custody after the state opposed his bail application.
He is accused of showing the victim some pornographic material that was in his phone before he indecently assaulted and raped her.
Mpondo is facing four separate charges, including exposing a child to pornographic material, two counts of aggravated indecent assault and one count of rape.
According to the case outline, on July 15 this year, the girl, who wanted to do her homework, went to Mpondo’s room to ask for his cell phone.
Mpondo instead showed her a pornographic video before he let her go.
After the incident, Mpondo allegedly indecently assaulted the minor on two different occasions.
Court was told that on July 20, the minor asked Mpondo for some money to buy herself some snacks.
She later brought back the change to Mpondo who allegedly dragged her on to the bed and touched her breasts.
“During the period extending from July 21 to September 22, the complainant approached the accused and asked him for his phone so she could watch cartoons,” prosecutors said.
“The accused touched the complainant’s breasts, lifted her and put her on top of his body while he was lying on his back.
“He went on to remove her pants and then caressed her…and inserted his finger into her privates.”
It is further alleged that the minor went to Mpondo’s bedroom to again ask for his cell phone.
Mpondo allegedly refused to hand her the gadget claiming the battery was flat since he could not recharge it because of a power cut on the day.
He then allegedly told the girl to close the door before he lifted and raped her.
The abuse came into light after the girl’s mother saw a video of her daughter “touching herself”.