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Bathabile Dlamini: Trial mustn't cause secondary trauma for rape victims

The Minister for Women in the Presidency on Monday attended proceedings against Nigerian pastor Timothy Omotoso, who has been accused of sex trafficking and rape.

A screenshot of Minister for Women in the Presidency Bathabile Dlamini at the rape trial against accused Nigerian pastor Timothy Omotoso at the Port Elizabeth High Court on Monday, 22 October 2018. Picture: SABCNews/Youtube

CAPE TOWN - Minister for Women in the Presidency Bathabile Dlamini has attended proceedings against Nigerian pastor Timothy Omotoso, who has been accused of sex trafficking and rape on Monday.

In court, the defence for Omotoso and his two co-accused applied for the judge to recuse himself.

Judge Mandela Makaula dismissed the application in the Port Elizabeth High Court.

Omotoso and his co-accused questioned whether they would receive a fair trial with the presiding judge, accusing him of having been overtly sympathetic towards witness Cheryl Zondi, and aligning himself with her cause.

However, Judge Mandela Makaula says the defence's application for him to recuse himself had no merit.

Defence attorney Peter Daubermann, however, wants to consult further with senior counsel and says he's willing to take the matter to the Supreme Court of Appeal.

Meanwhile, Minister for Women in the Presidency Bathabile Dlamini addressed media at court saying cross-examination shouldn't be used as a platform to cause secondary trauma to victims.

She has condemned acts of gender-based violence perpetrated under the guise of religion and faith.

(Edited by Mihlali Ntsabo)