Jailed RMG Independent End Time Messages founder Robert Martin Gumbura’s appeal against both his rape conviction and sentencing will be heard this Wednesday at the High Court 2 years into his 40-year jail term.
Gumbura was convicted on 4 counts of rape in February 2014 when he appeared before Harare regional magistrate Hosea Mujaya facing 9 counts of rape. He was also found guilty of possessing pornographic material and was sentenced to 50 years in prison, 10 of which were wholly suspended on condition he does not commit an offence of a similar nature within 5 years.
After his conviction, Gumbura made several applications for bail pending appeal which were all thrown out, with Supreme Court judge Justice Bharat Patel ruling that his appeal had no prospects of success at all. Gumbura’s conviction has widely been debated in social circles with other legal minds saying that he has chances of success as the circumstances surrounding the alleged rapes did not clearly meet the test required to warrant a conviction.