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Bishop Israel Makamu charged with sexual assault, NPA confirms

26 May 2021 - 20:02 By Chrizelda Kekana and Deepika Naidoo
'Rea Tsotella' host Bishop Makamu appeared in the Palm Ridge magistrate's court on Wednesday.
'Rea Tsotella' host Bishop Makamu appeared in the Palm Ridge magistrate's court on Wednesday.
Image: Supplied/ Moja Love

Rea Tsotella presenter Bishop Israel Makamu has been released on R2,000 bail after appearing at the Palm Ridge magistrate's court on Wednesday on a charge of sexual assault, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) has confirmed. 

“The court released Bishop Israel Makamu on R2,000 bail after a brief appearance on a charge of sexual assault. Makamu was arrested today after a former employee of his church laid a complaint of sexual assault on May 19 2021 at the Brackendowns SAPS.

“The case relates to an incident that allegedly happened in his church office in Alrode during September 2018. The case was remanded to July 13 2021 for further investigations,” said NPA spokesperson Phindi Mjonondwane.

In a statement issued to TshisaLIVE, Moja Love said it could not comment at this stage. 

“Moja Love cannot comment on this matter at this point as it is before the law and as a channel we respect the judiciary system of the country to take its course without any interference,” said head of channel Bokani Moyo. 

Bishop made headlines this month after Moja Love confirmed it had accepted his decision to step down pending an internal investigation by the channel into a viral recording with “sexual connotations” involving him. 

The channel said Bishop was identified as the person behind a voice recording of the telephonic conversation where it is alleged Bishop tried to “solicit sexual favours”.

On the recording, the AmaBishop presenter could be heard asking the woman if she was alone as he planned to go see her. He then proceeds to ask the lady, “o tlo mpha? (will you give me)”, to which the lady — who refers to him as “daddy” — replies with a “no” multiple times before giving in and saying she would do so on Sunday.

Bishop has denied the conversation was sexual and claimed that it had been “doctored” as the voice recording apparently did not reflect the full conversation. 

TshisaLIVE reached out to Bishop for comment but was unsuccessful at the time of publishing.