#Church Gist

Shepard Bushiri- Controversies



Bushiri has said that he can “cure HIV.” He said that Jesus is the only one who can do miracles, so he has never done one in his life. But because he claimed miracles that couldn’t be proven, Botswana temporarily stopped him from entering the country.  This was before the courts decided that the ECG church could keep operating in Botswana. At first, he could go into the country whenever he wanted, but now he has to get a visa every time he wants to go into Botswana.

Costs for dinners in public

Some of Bushiri’s high-profile public meals are said to charge fees. This has been praised. People thought he charged R25,000 for a seat at his table at a gala dinner on December 23, 2017, at the Pretoria Showground and N$1,000 to get into a dinner in Windhoek, Namibia, in January 2016. Bushiri called the extreme price claims for “so-called gala dinners” that were in the news “made up” in several appearances.

Plans for investments

Bushiri is said to have said during a church meeting in March 2017 that he wanted to make everyone in his church a millionaire. Congregants were then told by email to give him at least R100,000 in cash within the next two days and offered a 50% return within 30 banking days. Those who couldn’t bring cash to the church were sent the bank information for a company called Rising Estates. The company is run by Willah Mudolo, Duncan Oduor Otieno, and Kit Ching Catherine Kum, who are all Bushiri’s lieutenants. People who gave Bushiri money almost two years ago said they had not gotten anything back.

Six people from Bushiri’s church say they were told that the money they gave would be invested in “gold minerals” in Zambia as part of a Palamabo investment scam. This seems to be related to the investment scheme. The church members showed proof that the money had been put into the ECG’s account at First National Bank. Captain Mluleki Mbi, a spokesman for the police in East London, Eastern Cape, confirmed that a case had been started against Palambano Investments and its directors after one of Bushiri’s followers, Nombeko Dwesini, made a complaint.

The birth of a child

Bushiri is said to have gotten a young Malawian girl pregnant in 2010. They met in 2007 in their home town, Mzimba. It is also said that he tried to get her to have an abortion by giving her a cheque for 80000 Malawian kwacha (about R1500), but the cheque bounced. In 2011, the woman gave birth to a girl who, according to the woman’s father, “looks just like Bushiri, and everyone in the neighbourhood knows that he is the biological father.” Now that the woman is married, her family says they “kept quiet out of fear.” The woman and child’s village told the news before the family went to Bushiri. Bushiri says that the cheque was stolen from him and that the day the woman says he made her pregnant, he was at a police station dealing with an attempted kidnap. In 2018, the mother tried again to get child support through the courts, but she failed. The girl’s family says that Bushiri admits to the accusations behind closed doors, even though he has denied them in public, and they have asked for a pregnancy test. His lawyer, Terrence Baloyi, did not answer when City Press sent him an email, sent him a text message, or called him.

Clothing not paid for

A businessman in Hong Kong named Darlington Manyawu says he sold Bushiri clothes worth R450000 but hasn’t been paid for them. He says that the clothes were given to Bushiri’s spokesperson, Maynard Manyowa, on June 28, 2019, and that Bushiri has been seen wearing them at public church events since then. The Elightened Christian Gathering church’s spokesman, Ephraim Nyondo, didn’t dispute the story, but he did say that Bushiri didn’t need to worry about it because it was between Manyawu and Manyowa.

Radio Veritas

The Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa (BCCSA) scolded the South African Catholic radio station Radio Veritas on December 1, 2019, for playing a one-sided programme full of accusations against Bushiri. Bushiri said that the broadcast was “malicious, hurtful to his reputation, libellous, full of lies, and based on nothing” and that he was not given the chance to respond. The BCCSA said that Veritas Radio broke the Broadcasting Act by not giving Bushiri’s point of view.

Accusations of cheating

On February 20, 2020, Terence Mukupe, who used to be Zimbabwe’s deputy finance minister, said that Bushiri had an affair with Mukupe’s singer wife, Rachel, which led to Rachel getting pregnant. He said that he had proof from WhatsApp that his wife and the minister had planned to meet up for “sex romps in Malawi, Pretoria, and Rustenburg.” He also said that Bushiri had taken R100,000 (about $7,500) from him to pay for his church, the Enlightened Christian Gathering.[

Bushiri replied to the claims by saying that he had not left South Africa in the past 13 months, so he could not have met with Rachel Mukupe. He also said that he hadn’t used WhatsApp or iMessage in three years, so he couldn’t have sent her the texts that Terence Mukupe said he found. Bushiri also said that he had asked his lawyers in Zimbabwe to “urgently seek legal recourse.”

Mukupe told Bushiri that Bushiri had not used his own phone to call Rachel and that Mukupe had paid for Bushiri’s plane tickets.[89][90] Reports say that “Mukupe’s public fight with Bushiri has caused ZANU–PF members to have different ideas about his mental fitness to lead the ZanuPF youth league.”

On March 3, Rachel, who goes by the name Rachel J, replied to the claims made by Bushiri and Mukupe. In her message, which was made public by her family, she said:

She wasn’t married to Terence Mukupe, but he lived in her house and they had kids together.

She took care of him and his ten kids.

Rachel broke up with Terence Mukupe because she found out that he had gotten Tracy Winterboer pregnant again. This is the second child that Mukupe had with the same woman while Rachel was dating him.

Bushiri is said to have gotten her pregnant, but Mukupe’s proof shows that they met in 2018. They asked, “How is it possible for her to be pregnant for two years?”

On March 4, Rachel J’s family asked that a paternity test be done on the child to show that Bushiri was not the father.

Rachel had a girl on March 6. She called her “Najah, Deborah, Makomborero.”[96] At that point, no tests had been done to find out who the father was.

Sexual assault and rape

Shepherd Bushiri was charged with 16 counts of rape against 8 different people on March 21, 2021. At the time, the cops had already given Bushiri three arrest warrants for three different rape charges.[98] The cops said that Bushiri went to his church to pick on women and girls. Police reports say that the girls, some of whom were as young as 15 and were sisters, were kept in hotel rooms and brutally raped for hours before they were given $500 to $700 and told to leave. Later, the police said they were looking into Bushiri’s friends, whom they said were threatening victims. They also said that between 2016 and 2018, several people had accused Bushiri of rape but then changed their stories after being scared or paid off. In December 2021, the police arrested Brigadier Rosey Resondt’s husband, Clifford Cornelius Resondt, who was Bushiri’s head of security. They charged them with corruption and beating the ends of justice because Bushiri gave them R500,000 to give to a rape victim who later changed her story.

Getting a fake permit

On October 24, 2020, South African Police said that Shepherd Bushiri’s stay in the country may not have been legal. This was because Bushiri’s South African ID card was granted in 1996, but he and his wife first came to South Africa as tourists in 2010. Later, the cops said that Bushiri had paid for a fake residency permit and that he was there illegally. After the news came out, 5 officials were fired because they had given Bushiri fake ID papers.


South Africa’s Directorate for Priority Investigations (HAWKS) arrested Bushiri and his wife on February 1, 2019, for theft and money laundering. The Hawks said that the case against the couple was related to claimed crimes of fraud, money laundering, and breaking South Africa’s Prevention of Organised Crime Act (POCA) from 2015. The Act was broken when $1147,200 worth of foreign cash was used in a way that was against the Exchange Control Regulations.

Bushiri’s court case was put off on August 28, 2019, until November 29, 2019, so that his lawyers, such as Terrence Baloyi and Barry Roux, could talk to the National Prosecuting Authority. After that, the hearing was moved to July 27, 2020, but then it was moved again to October 2020.

In November 2019, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) asked for Bushiri’s 1984 Gulfstream plane to be taken away. The plane was kept in a garage at Lanseria airport, north of Johannesburg. The NPA said that the plane had been bought with money that had been stolen. Bushiri said he bought it legally in 2016 for $1,250,000 (R1,700,000,000). The forfeiture case was not ready to go forward, so it was taken off the court roll.

After Bushiri and his wife went to the Specialised Commercial Crimes Court in Pretoria on February 6, 2019, they were each given R100000 (about $7500) bail. One of the terms of their bail was that they stay in Gauteng and that the state keep their passports. If they needed to go somewhere, they would have to get writing permission from the people who were looking into the case. Bushiri and his wife were not allowed to talk to any of the witnesses, either.

Before their court date on October 30, 2020, on October 20, 2020, the Bushiris were arrested on new charges that had not been brought up before. There were different accounts that Landiwe Sindani, Landiwe Ntokwana, Willah Mudolo, and Zethu Mudolo were also accused of fraud along with the Bushiris. The Bushiris are also said to be in South Africa illegally and to have broken visa rules more than once since at least 2015. Their request for bail was set for October 30. The Bushiris were not let out of jail because they were thought to be likely to run away. This was because they were accused of illegally sending a Bentley and a Maserati to Malawi in early 2020.

The scam case will go to court in May of 2021.

On November 14, 2020, news came out that Bushiri and his wife had broken the terms of their bail by going back to Malawi because they were afraid for their safety. Bushiri and his wife were arrested in their home country on November 18. On November 20, they were let out of a Malawi jail because their arrest was not legal.

The next week, Bushiri and his wife were caught again and taken to court. Prosecutors in Malawi wanted to send them to South Africa. They were given bail and their case for return is still going on. In February 2022, the high court refused to dismiss Bushiri’s challenge to his return. Instead, it sent the case to the Magistrate’s court for a decision.

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