A Bulawayo lawyer who was indecently assaulted by Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) church pastor Brighton Ndebele is suing both the church and the Pastor who has since been fired. The woman is claiming $250 000 in damages.
The woman is suing the fired pastor and the church for crimen injuria, psychological distress, contumelia and violation of her personal integrity. She is suing the church because she alleges that the church failed to take necessary disciplinary measures against Ndebele. The church allegedly interrrogated her for filing a police report and declaring her an outcast and a renegade. She accused the church trying to sweep the Pastor Ndebele’s “predatory sexual proclivities” under the carpet.
Part of her court papers read:
As a result of the actions of the defendants, I suffered serious mental anguish, psychological distress and trauma, injury to my dignity and a violation to my person and family privacy. The church failed to ensure an environment in which all members are safe from sexual harassment and molestation by pastors and any persons affiliated to it.
Ndebele (32) was convicted of indecently assaulting the lawyer in October 2016 by Bulawayo magistrate Ms Adelaide Mbeure and sentenced to 12 months in jail.