PRETORIA-(MaraviPost)-The South African-based Malawian prophet Shepherd Bushiri the leader of Enlightened Christian Gathering (ECG) Church along side his wife is expected to be in court Monday, February 4 following their arrest for fraud and money laundering.
They were arrested on Friday by South Africa authorities and are being in prison until the trial starts on Monday in Pretoria.
The church’s External Relations Manager, Maynard Manyowa posted a statement on Bushiri’s official Facebook account informing congregants of the arrest.
According to the post, Bushiri and his wife Mary were arrested at the Sparkling Waters Hotel in Rustenburg.
The post claims that Bushiri is facing charges of fraud and money laundering.
Below is the full official facebook post;
Important Notice: To all children of the Prophet….
This morning, around 07:00hrs in the morning armed members of the police stormed Sparkling Waters Hotel in Rustenburg, South Africa. We were later made aware that they were members of the Directorate for Priority Investigations (HAWKS).
They took the Prophet and our mother Prophetess Mary Bushiri in handcuffs to Pretoria. They have charged our father with fraud and money laundering.
As you will remember, from last year, we have struggled with reports that our father was guilty. We have repeatedly learnt from different media houses that we were under investigation.
At some point accurate reports pointed out the fact that certain people within the police had demanded bribes amounting up to R10 million. This is a matter that is on record and well known.
He has been detained and is being questioned by the HAWKS in Silverton, Pretoria. We will give you more updates as we go.
We would like to encourage our members to be steadfast in prayer. This morning we were vindicated through the CRL after weeks of being painted wrong. We urge you to remember that this too shall pass.
Last year Sowetan’s sister paper, Sunday World, reported that the police’s elite crime-fighting unit, the Hawks, was investigating charismatic prophet Shepherd Bushiri for money laundering after members of the church leadership claimed he was sending an estimated R15-million a month to Malawi, his country of birth.
The money was allegedly transported out of South Africa in Bushiri’s private jet and other vehicles
This week Bushiri appeared before the Commission for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Cultural, Religious and Linguistic Communities (the CRL Rights Commission) to explain the circumstances surrounding the deaths of three women who were killed during a stampede at the church in December 2018.
The commission recommended that the church find a suitable venue to accommodate its congregants following a report by the Tshwane municipality that the church premises did not comply with safety regulations.