Whoever thought that commercial sex workers indiscriminately consent to sexual intercourse- with or without payment for services- will have to wait for more than a decade and ask a 32-year-old Esigodini who has been jailed 15 years for raping a ‘thigh vendor’ before robbing her of R200 and her cellphone, to think otherwise.

The convicted rapist Thobani Moyo from the Ntabenende area of Esigodini, in Matabeleland South province, will now serve an effective 12 years behind bars after Gwanda magistrate Sibonginkosi Mkandla suspended three years on condition that he does not commit a similar offence in the next five years.

Moyo was charged and subsequently convicted due to overwhelming evidence despite pleading not guilty to the rape and robbery charges levelled against him.

According to prosecutor Khumbulani Nyoni, the now incarcerated Moyo met the complainant at Ntabenende Business Centre at around 11PM on March 11, and offered to pay her for her services and she agreed, before they went to his home.

When they met, Nyoni said the complainant was having drinks in the company of her friends.

“He (Moyo) approached the complainant and offered to pay for her services and she agreed and they proceeded to his house. The (sex worker) demanded to see the money which Moyo was going to give her first before she could entertain him. Moyo refused and insisted on producing the money after they were done,” Nyoni told the court.

He further said that Moyo refused to show his ‘catch’ the money he would pay, with the sex worker threatening to leave before entertaining him in bed.

The court also heard that Moyo subsequently produced a knife and threatened to stab the complainant if she didn’t comply with his orders.

“He (then) ordered the complainant to remove her clothes and went on to rape her. (Moyo) further took R200 which the complainant had and her cell phone and ordered her to leave,” he said.

It is also alleged that the complainant fled to a neighbouring house where she narrated what Moyo had done to her.

The matter was then reported to the police, leading to Moyo’s arrest.

In turn, the accused, denied the charges in his defence, saying when they left the business centre, they had settled for R150 before before the complainant latter shifted goal posts saying after the hanky-panky was over, she started demanding R200 in exchange for her services.

He also accused the complainant of fabricating facts in a bid to ‘fix’ him.

“I gave her the R150 which we had agreed on but she demanded R200 which I didn’t have. She refused to leave my house insisting that I give her the extra R50 up until I forcibly removed her from my house. When she left, she threatened to fix me and that’s when she went on to fabricate the allegations. I did not rape the complainant as she had consented to sexual intercourse or rob her off her money,” Moyo said.

state media
Additional Reporting: Zwnews