Charismatic preacher Prophet Shepherd Bushiri has been targeted in an online smear campaign based on doctored images.
The photoshopped images, of socialite Phumzile Maripane and the cleric – which appeared in the City Press – were carefully cropped out to remove other people, and then super imposed onto foreign backgrounds, to give the impression that the preacher had taken images in the company of the woman alone.
However, the original images have since surfaced, showing the great deception.
The original image is of Prophet Bushiri with several members of the youth after a basketball match while the fake image is being circulated alongside a story claiming Major 1 had an affair with the lady in the picture.
The original image showing youths at the boat cruise held by the prophet. As seen, he is not alone with the woman.
Circled are the images which were cropped to mislead people into believing that the lady in question was spending time alone with the prophet.
Contacted for comment, Enlightened Christian Gathering Church’s external media relations manager, Maynard Manyowa, scoffed at the smear campaign.
“Its clearly a smear campaign. But the office of the prophet, and the entire ministry are not only immune to these doses of fake poison but unmoved and unconcerned. The photoshop artists have a lot of time on their hands. They would best exercise their talents doing fruitful things.”
Manyowa added that smear campaigns aimed at the prophet were utterly useless.
“Look, the images are doctored and fake. I do not see the point of them either. A fake story will always remain fake. It is meaningless to try and mislead people into thinking there is a story here when there is none. At the end of the day made up things remain fiction.”
The ECG denounced City Press story as “fake news” after exposing the doctored images.
“This is not only malicious, libelous and mischievous, it is a spit in the face of earnest readers who actually but this newspaper.”
It said fake news is a cancer that must be shamed and uprooted.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :