Order to Remain in Custody: Prophet Shepherd Bushiri and his wife Mary were ordered by the Pretoria commercial crimes court to remain in police custody over the weekend as they fight to be released on bail in a matter where they are accused of fraud and money laundering involving an amount in the region of ZAR102 million. The bail application could not be finalised on Friday 23 October 2020 as the court’s time was primarily occupied by an application for the media to be granted permission to broadcast the proceedings live from the court. The media application was eventually granted and the bail application proceeded. Major 1 submitted an affidavit in support of his application to be released on bail in which he submitted that he is not a flight risk as he has got assets and a fixed residential address in South Africa and in any event, his travel documents are in the custody of the police and he has no intention of avoiding his trial as he has not tried to do so with the other matter which is pending before the courts and has been postponed for trial on 31 May 2021. Mary Bushiri also filed an affidavit with the court in which she maintains her innocence and challenged the State show the court how she is linked to the business from which the charges allegedly arose. The matter was postponed to Monday 26 October 2020 for further hearing. Both Prophet Shepherd Bushiri and Prophetess Mary Bushiri would remain in custody and likely to be held at Kgosi Mampuru Maximum Prison.
Prophet Bushiri’s supporters: Prophet Bushiri’s supporters attended court in large numbers and they vowed to return to court on 26 October 2020 to support him and his wife. They maintained that prophet Bushiri is innocent of the charges leveled against him and that the truth will eventually prevail and he will be cleared of all charges against him. Further that Major 1 is a pastor and a businessman and cannot be treated like a criminal, and that there is actually a plot against him by some people. In any event that Major 1 is prepared to co-operate with the authorities in their investigations into the allegations leveled against him.
Prophet Bushiri’s TRIAL IN CONTEXT: Jesus said that “they will strike the shepherd and the sheep will be scattered.” In the next article, we will be drawing comparisons between the trials of Prophet Shepherd Bushiri and that of the founder of the Christian Movement, Jesus of Nazareth, in 33 AD, his appearance before the Sanhedrin, the transfer of the case to Pontius Pilate, his brief appearance before Herod Antipas, his conviction and sentence to crucifixion, the persecution of Christians particularly during the reign of Emperor Nero in 50 AD (there are accounts which state that the apostles Peter and Paul were killed in Rome during the reign of Emperor Nero), the Battle of the Milvian Bridge between Roman Emperors Constantine 1 and Maxentius on 28 October 312 AD, Jesus’ appearance to Constantine in a vision during the battle, the resultant complete victory of Emperor Constantine, recognition of Christianity as a State religion within the Roman Empire, (the edict of Thesalonica in AD 380) the signing of the Edict of Milan (latin: Edictum Mediolanense) in February 313 AD between the Western Roman Emperor Constantine and Emperor Licinius, who controlled the Balkans, in which they agreed to end all hostilities towards and persecutions of Christians within the whole of the Roman Empire. The edict forms part of South African common law and Christians are entitled to rely on it to prevent prosecution of religious activities.