A 23-year-old assistant pastor, on Tuesday, narrated how a bishop of 1 Reign Christian Ministry ,Daniel Oluwafeyiropo, allegedly raped her twice.
The survivor told the Sexual Offences and Domestic Violence Court sitting in Ikeja, Lagos State that the bishop, who she regarded as her spiritual father, raped her at his residence on Ikota Villa Estate, Lekki, Lagos State, on June 21, 2020.
Bishop Oluwafeyiropo is standing trial on an amended three-count charge bordering on rape and sexual assault, to which he pleaded not guilty.
The assistant pastor (name withheld) who is also the survivor testified for the prosecution at the bishop’s trial .
The lady, who led in evidence by Lagos State counsel, Babajide Boye, told the court that she knew the bishop on May 28, 2018, when her friend invited her to a church programme at which the bishop ministered in Akungba-Akoko, Ondo State.
The pastor disclosed that the programme was tagged ‘Strictly Supernatural’, adding that she subsequently became a member of the church and rose to the position of an assistant pastor.
She said one Pastor Boluwatishe Oladejo took over from Pastor Toyosi Bamise as the Lead Pastor then.
The lady said: “I was listening to Pastor Chris’s message when bishop came to the three-seater chair I was sitting on and told me to go naked.
“For the fear of what happened a day before, I went naked, and bishop locked the door, increased the volume of the television, and went naked also.
“He pinned me to the chair and raped me. He was bigger than me.”
She said she appealed to the bishop to leave her but he did not.
“He threatened that I would run mad if I should tell anyone; so, I was in the guest room till the following day.
“On June 22, I sent a message to Pastor Boluwatishe and informed him that I had been raped,” the pastor added.
She further told the court that the bishop did not allow her to go out of the house after the first alleged rape.
“He sent the gateman anytime I needed anything. It was at this time that it was dawn on me that this man is a rapist.
“For my safety, I was acting stupid and acted as if I did not tell anyone.
“I was in the room when he came again and said he wanted to have sex but I refused.
“He was very angry; so, I told him I had tears from the previous sexual violation,” she testified.
The witness said, on June 23, 2020, the bishop also told her that he wanted to have sex with her.
“He said I should count it as a privilege that he had sex with me because many people would love to have sex with him.
“I told him I had someone I was dating.
“That same morning of June 23, he took off my dress and raped me again in the sitting room.
“He told me I would die if I should tell anyone. I bled a second time because of the forceful entry,” she said.
The lady earlier told the court that the bishop called her on phone on June 5, 2020, saying it was her turn to come with some other pastors to his house in the Lekki area of Lagos.
She added that, on June 19, when she got to the house, the bishop came out from his room and told her that she had a query to answer.
She testified that the bishop told her that she would transcribe his message entitled ‘Fulfilling My Ministry’.
She said: “The following day, on June 20, only the bishop and I were left in the house after other pastors had left.
“The bishop told me to go on a three-hour prayer work around the estate but I came back 30 minutes before the three hours elapsed due to rain.
“He questioned why I returned earlier, and I told him that it was due to rainfall.
“I was seated on a couch that same day listening to Pastor Chris’s message when the bishop walked up to me from the dining section and made comments on the teaching I was listening to.”
She testified that the bishop thereafter told her to pull off her clothes but didn’t rape her.
“He said he wanted to know my loyalty and see If I had finally submitted to him.
“I told him I could do anything for him but sex. He tried kissing me but I stopped him; then, he slapped me.
“He ordered me to wear back my clothes, saying that I disappointed him,” the pastor added.
She testified that, on June 24, 2020, the bishop told her to clean up the house, adding: “That was when Sister Faith and Pastor Toyosi came to the house.
“I tried to talk to Pastor Toyosi but bishop did not give me a breathing space until he travelled to Ghana and I went home.”
The alleged survivor also told the court that the defendant sent N5,000 to her from Ghana to treat herself because of the tears she had.
“He got back to Nigeria with his two children and wife, and when the wife asked why I could not walk well, bishop told her I contacted a disease from toilet.
“He came to meet me about 3.30 a.m. in the guest room and brought out a rod for me to swear with, that I would run mad if I should tell anyone that he raped me, which I did out of fear.
“He took me to First City Hospital, Lekki, where Dr Tina Clement, a member of the church attended to me, ran some tests, gave me drugs, and sent the results to him.
“When the doctor asked what happened to me, bishop told me to tell her I was raped by my friend, and he was with me throughout the tests,” she said.
A computer printout of chats between her and the defendant was admitted in evidence.
Bishop Oluwafeyiropo is also alleged to have had sexual intercourse with one other person and sexually assaulted another, aged 19 years, by forcefully sucking her breasts.
According to Lagos State Government, which is prosecuting the case, the alleged offences contravene Sections 260(2) and 263 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.
The presiding judge, Justice Ramon Oshodi, therefore, adjourned the case until May 24, 2023, for the cross-examination of the witness and continuation of trial.
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