A MAN from Mzilikazi suburb in Bulawayo allegedly told a 13-year- old minor from his church that God wanted people to love one another before he allegedly fondled her.
The 50-year-old man, who is a Harvest House International church member, appeared before magistrate Ms Gladmore Mushove facing indecent assault charges.
He pleaded not guilty and was remanded out of custody to tomorrow for continuation of trial.
The man, whose identity has been withheld to protect the identity of the minor, said he never touched the girl, but only asked her to give him a wheel barrow as they were neighbours.
“I went to the minor’s home to ask for a wheel barrow to take to the grinding mill as I had defaulted drinking my Anti retroviral drugs (ARVS) because I had not eaten for two days. Even the Bible says that if a person says I did not do something they should stick to their word and I only asked for a wheel barrow,” he said.
However, the minor said the man came to their home while she was alone just after she arrived from school.
The minor said the man used to tell her about how women experienced pain when giving birth as punishment from God after Eve had sinned.
Prosecuting, Ms Petronila Ngwenya said the man started preaching before fondling the minor.
“On June 26, last year, the man went to the juvenile’s house seeking a wheel barrow which he was given by the juvenile. He proceeded to the kitchen and started preaching the gospel to the minor,” she said.
The court heard that the accused caressed the minor’s buttocks and chest. He then allegedly put his hands inside her panties and touched her private parts.