HARARE – A Bulawayo magistrate has jailed a dancer with a local traditional group, Hloseni Arts Ensemble, for 20 years for raping the wife of a fellow dancer.
Philani Mabasa, 28, had pleaded not guilty to three counts of raping 20-year-old Lorraine Ngwenya when he appeared before regional magistrate Owen Tagu.
At the time of the offence, Mabasa, a former National Arts Merit Awards (Nama) outstanding dancer winner, was staying at the amphitheatre premises where the dance group conducts its rehearsals.
State prosecutor Admire Chikwayi told the court that on January 4, the group was rehearsing at the amphitheatre when at about 4pm, the woman’s husband went to the city centre leaving his wife in their room.
Mabasa went to the woman’s room and asked for a pen, but was told to wait for her husband’s return.
He forced his way into the room by pushing her inside and locked the door.
Mabasa then raped her twice and threatened to stab her with a screwdriver if she screamed.
Undaunted, Mabasa returned later and raped the woman for the third time while threatening her with death if she told anyone about the ordeal.
As the rape kept haunting her, Lorraine finally narrated the whole incident to her husband who then escorted her to make a police report.