Prophet Shepherd Bushiri followers in Malawi on Wednesday stormed South African Embassy in Lilongwe demanding that authorities in Pretoria must stop ill-treating embattled preacher, Prophet Shepherd Bushiri.
The protest in Lilongwe came as the court in South Africa was hearing his bail application following the arrest last week together with his wife, Mary on money laundering charges.
The charismatic preacher and his wife were granted R100 000 bail each Wednesday morning at Pretoria Specialized Commercial Crimes Court.
Social media have been awash with reports that the arrest was politically motivated.
Malawians stormed the South African Embassy in Lilongwe demanding that Bushiri be freed and alleged that the arrest was motivated by greed people who were against the preacher.
Malawi Black Economic Empowerment (Mablem) Chairperson for Mablem Robert Mkwezalamba presented a petition today to South Africa Embassy in Lilongwe.
In the petition, Mablem demands justice for Bushiri during the court proceedings.
“We heard that Bushiri was asked to bribe numerous South Africa officials in police services in order to release him as such, we want to remind South Africa through its human rights commission that it was infringement of human rights.
“Bushiri as a citizen from another country deserve dignity and fair justice,” Mkwezalamba said.
The group also asked South Africa to allow other nationals to develop economically whilst living in their country.
Counselor on political affairs at the South African High Commission Paul Siljeur who received the petition said although the embassy is not in a position to intervene on the issue they will follow progress of the case with keen interest.
Presentation of the petition followed a solidarity march which started at Parliament Roundabout and thereafter a vigil at South Africa High Commissioner premises.
People from the prophet’s church including pastors and many participants wore T-shirts written “release Bushiri now” and carried Malawi flags in their hands.
Outside the Pretoria courts in South Africa, hundreds of his followers demanded that Bushiri speaks to them after he had been released but church authorities said it was impossible for the preacher to do so due to fear of a similar misfortune that ended up with three lives lost during their cross over service in December.