Apostle and co-accused due in court for human trafficking

Apostle Lonwabo Nikolas Tede (52), Vuyolwethu Namba (37) and an additional 39-year-old male will appear in Zwelitsha Magistrate’s court for allegations of trafficking in persons today.

It is alleged that during the period between 2005 and 2020, Tede as an Apostle in Zion church in Quzini Village outside King William’s Town was sexually abusing his vulnerable congregants. The Apostle accommodated them in the name of healing those who are sick and providing for the needy.

The matter was reported to the Trafficking in persons’ desk of East London based Serious Organised Crime Investigation for probing. Investigations revealed allegations of Namba being the middle man in orchestrating the recruitment of would-be victims.

The duo was arrested on 13 November 2021. They were denied bail several times, the last instance being the 22 March 2022. They even approached the High court but their appeal was dismissed.

The Apostle is appearing with his original accomplice and a new additional 39-year-old suspect who is also implicated. He is alleged to have been responsible in ensuring that victims were responsible for building the mansion of the Apostle without being paid. The appearance of the trio is a further attempt on bail application.

Source: South African Police Service