Timothy Omotoso, the rape-accused pastor will spend yet another Christmas behind bars.

His case was postponed to 2021 in the Eastern Cape High Court in Port Elizabeth on Monday after the court dismissed his application to have the testimony of two State witnesses declared inadmissible.

His lawyer, Peter Daubermann, said that Judge Philip Zilwa did not provide reasons for the dismissal on Monday. He said “I don’t know, the judge did not give any reasons”.

He added that “The trial will resume on 26 January 2021. I have no further comment. It is improper for an attorney or advocate to comment on a case which is sub judice”.

Omotoso has been in jail since 20 April 2017, when the Hawks in Port Elizabeth arrested him. He shares the dock with Lusanda Sulani and Zukiswa Sitho, who are out on bail.

The three face 97 charges, including rape, human trafficking and racketeering, for allegedly targeting and recruiting young girls for sexual exploitation. It is alleged that the girls were moved from their homes to two mission houses in KwaZulu-Natal, where they were allegedly made to engage in sexual acts with Omotoso.

The televangelist has been beset by failed applications since the start of the long-running case.

Last month, the same court refused to release him on bail.

Earlier this month, his bid for leave to appeal the judgment also failed. Omotoso’s legal team submitted that the court, finding that he was a flight risk, overlooked the existence of an extradition treaty between South Africa and his home country, Nigeria.