PG al­leges in­ter­fer­ence in Gu­va­mombe case

Sunday News (Zimbabwe) - - Front Page -

ACT­ING Prose­cu­tor-Gen­eral Mr Kumbi­rai Hodzi al­leges that some se­nior of­fi­cials are try­ing to in­ter­fere with State wit­nesses in­volved in the case of sus­pended chief mag­is­trate Mishrod Gu­va­mombe who ap­peared in court yes­ter­day.

Gu­va­mombe, who was hauled be­fore the court on charges of crim­i­nal abuse of of­fice, has since been granted $3 000 bail cou­pled with strin­gent con­di­tions af­ter ap­pear­ing be­fore Harare mag­is­trate Mr Mu­nam­ato Mutevedzi.

He was ar­rested on Fri­day on al­le­ga­tions of of­fer­ing in­dus­trial at­tach­ment to two for­mer Cab­i­net Min­is­ters Saviour Ka­sukuwere and Supa Mandi­wanzira at the Harare Mag­is­trates’ Court in full knowl­edge that the duo were fac­ing charges of cor­rup­tion be­fore the same courts. The ex-min­is­ters are study­ing law at the Univer­sity of Zim­babwe. In an in­ter­view yes­ter­day, Mr Hodzi said a po­lice re­port has since been made.

“As far as the chief mag­is­trate is con­cerned, we have gath­ered that there are some in­flu­en­tial peo­ple that have been at­tempt­ing to in­ter­fere in his case. There are wit­nesses who were be­ing forced to change their state­ments. We want to as­sure the pub­lic that this case will be dealt with to the fullest ex­tent of the law.”

The act­ing PG said he was not in a po­si­tion to name the cul­prits for fear of jeop­ar­dis­ing on­go­ing in­ves­ti­ga­tions.

“In­ves­ti­ga­tions are con­tin­u­ing and we don’t want to jeop­ar­dise the process. I can as­sure the peo­ple that we are on top of the sit­u­a­tion and we will not be in­tim­i­dated.”

The PG’s Of­fice, Mr Hodzi added, has made head­way in un­rav­el­ling some of the crim­i­nal net­works in­volved in grand cor­rup­tion.

“We now have an idea of what we are deal­ing with and we have made some break­throughs. In the full­ness of time, ev­ery­thing will be re­vealed. Th­ese car­tels in­clude mem­bers of the ju­di­ciary, the me­dia and NPA of­fi­cials.”

Mr Hodzi said his of­fice is also look­ing into al­le­ga­tions by top Harare lawyer Ad­vo­cate Slyvester Hashiti of cor­rup­tion in the ju­di­ciary.

“Mr Hashiti made se­ri­ous al­le­ga­tions per­tain­ing to cor­rup­tion of the ju­di­ciary. I have asked him to come for­ward with the in­for­ma­tion and we will do all we can to act on any mat­ter that is brought for­ward,” he said.

Yes­ter­day, Mr Mutevedzi granted Gu­va­mombe bail af­ter he ruled that the State, which was rep­re­sented by Messrs Michael Reza and Zi­vanai Macharaga, failed to sub­mit com­pelling rea­sons to deny bail. The State un­suc­cess­fully claimed that Gu­va­mombe was likely to in­ter­fere with wit­nesses once re­leased.

State wit­ness Mr Cle­mence Mashawu of the Zim­babwe Repub­lic Po­lice (ZRP)’s Anti-Cor­rup­tion Unit, who is the lead in­ves­ti­gat­ing of­fi­cer in the case, al­leged that the ac­cused had threat­ened some wit­nesses. Mr Mashawu also claimed that Gu­va­mombe had also di­rected Harare provin­cial mag­is­trate Elisha Singano to give him key case files.

But the de­fence, led by Mr Jonathan Sa­mukange, who was as­sisted by Messrs Farai Nya­ma­yaro, Arnold Taruvinga and Steady Kachere, said the case files were meant to as­sist in pre­par­ing the ac­cused’s de­fence.

Gu­va­mombe was or­dered to sur­ren­der his pass­port and pro­hib­ited from trav­el­ing 50 kilo­me­tres out of Harare. He will also re­port thrice a week at Harare’s Crim­i­nal In­ves­ti­ga­tions De­part­ment (CID). Fur­ther, he was or­dered to sur­ren­der surety of prop­erty worth more than $30 000.

Gu­va­mombe will ap­pear for rou­tine re­mand on 25 Jan­uary.

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