Disciplinary hearing for gold mine cops
FOUR senior police officers have appeared before a disciplinary hearing for allegedly operating a gold mine in violation of the Police Act.
Chief Superintendent Fiona Hlomani and Superintendents Temba Mpofu, Tambudzai Muchineuta and Batsirai Mungwa yesterday appeared before Provincial Magistrate Mrs Phathekile Msipa charged with contravening the Police Act for “without the approval of the Commissioner General of Police, carrying on any business trade, occupation or business either directly or through the agency of any other person.”
Mrs Msipa was brought in to preside over the matter after the police officers asked to be tried by a magistrate from the Judicial Service Commission through their lawyer Mr Tonderai Chitere of Chitere and Chidawanyika and Partners.
Charges against Chief Supt Hlomani were withdrawn before plea while Sups Mpofu, Muchineuta and Mungwa pleaded not guilty.
The matter was remanded to today when Mrs Msipa is expected to make a determination on whether or not the accused persons have a case to answer.
In their defence outline, the accused persons denied operating or conducting a business without authority.
“Accused person two, three and four did not conduct any business because even though they entered into a contract for mining they had no capacity. Because they had no equipment and money required they could not seek authority for a business venture they were unable to embark on,” reads part of their defence outline.
Prosecutor Kelvin Guveya said between December last year and February 19 and at Bell 3, Kwekwe, Consolidated Gold Mines, Chief Supt Hlomani, Sups Mpofu, Muchineuta and Mungwa one or more of them unlawfully engaged in gold mining activities without the approval of the Commissioner General of Police Augustine Chihuri.