Bulawayo councillor ‘sells discount facility stand twice’
BARELY three months after the Government suspended five Bulawayo councillors on corruption allegations, another councillor has been caught on the wrong side of the law after allegedly selling a residential stand to two buyers.
Ward 23 councillor, Thobani Ncube was arraigned before West Commonage magistrate, Ms Tancy Dube facing one count of fraud.
According to court papers he defrauded Ms Vainah Moyo (54) of $12 000.
Investigations have revealed that Ncube purchased the residential stand, which is located in Matsheumhlope, under a discounted government facility.
Councillors are not allowed to resell the discounted stands.
Ward 21 councillor, Reuben Matengu remains on suspension after he sold his residential stand bought under a similar facility.
Ncube who resides in Bellevue suburb — despite representing a ward which includes Nkulumane 5, 10 and 11— was not asked to plead to the charge and remanded out of custody to December 8.
Prosecuting, Mr Mufaro Mageza said sometime in July this year, the complainant, Ms Moyo met Ncube via a middleman, who is also a councillor, Rodney Jele (Ward 22).
“On an unknown date but in the period extending from July 25 to October 1 this year, the complainant met the accused person with the intention of buying a residential stand. The complainant paid $12 000 in instalments towards the purchase of the stand.
“In November 2016, the complainant wanted to write up an agreement of sale, only to discover that the same stand had been sold to Mnvangeli Xaba,” said the prosecutor.
Ms Moyo told the court she had paid $12 000 towards the purchase of stand number 364, Matsheumhlope suburb.
“I ran around looking for a stand on behalf of someone else. I met one Rodney Jele, another councillor, and he told me that Thobani Ncube was selling a residential stand. We met him and he confirmed that he was selling residential stand number 364 Matsheumhlope suburb for $23 000.
“After a down payment of $12 000, I phoned the accused person and told him to write up an agreement of sale but he gave me an unsatisfactory explanation. He started ignoring my calls and he was nowhere to be seen. That is when I discovered that I had been duped,” said Ms Moyo.
Jele confirmed that he was the middleman in the sale of the stand, revealing that Ncube had claimed Ms Moyo was failing to pay for the stand.
“I remember in the month of July 2016, I was approached by the complainant who told me that she was looking for a residential stand to buy in Matsheumhlope, Bulawayo, and I told her that the accused person (Ncube) had one which was up for sale. I assisted the two to meet and they negotiated the price and the terms of payment.
“After some time, the accused person came back to me and told me that the complainant was failing to pay for the stand and he wanted another buyer. I also ran around and met Mvangeli Xaba. The two reached an agreement and I was asked by the accused person to witness said Jele.
During court proceedings the investigating officer, Detective Constable Trymore Bvukuta opposed bail revealing that the councillor had not been cooperative when asked to come to the police station.
Ncube was also said to have no permanent place of residence. Council records state that he resides at house number 11369 Nkulumane but the court documents give his place of residence as number 24 Churchill Road, Bellevue.
He was remanded for commencement of trial to December 8 on $100 bail.
In September this year, Local Government, Public Works and National Housing Minister, Cde Saviour Kasukuwere suspended five councillors in the city on corruption allegations.
Two of the suspended councillors — Matengu and Clr Mzama Dube (Ward 25) — allegedly violated terms of their agreements of sale by selling stands they had bought from the local authority under ministerial directive. — @andile_tshuma/@vusadb it,”