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Chombo charged, reveals ordeal

FORMER Finance minister Ignatius Chombo will spend the weekend in jail after he was charged for alleged corrupt deals, some cases dating as far back as 1997.

BY OBEY MANAYITI

Chombo, who was arrested by the army on November 14 when former president Robert Mugabe was placed under house arrest, appeared at the Harare magistrates court alongside Zanu PF youth league leaders Kudzanai Chipanga and Innocent Hamandishe.

The former Zanu PF secretary for administration and Chipanga gave a chilling account of how they were seized by the soldiers from their Harare homes and detained for almost a week.

However, their bid for freedom on condition that they were over-detained hit a snag as the presiding magistrates dismissed their applications to be placed off remand.

Chombo, who was facing three counts dating as far back as 20 years ago, appeared before magistrate Elisha Singalo, who said he would look at his bail application on Monday.

In the first count, Chombo was accused of fraudulently forging documents that included a lease to acquire Subdivisions “K” Portion of Nthaba portion of Glen Lorne from City of Harare where he is said to have signed and manufactured a fraudulent lease agreement on January 1 1997. City of Harare is said to have been prejudiced of $900 000.

On the second count, which is criminal abuse of duty by a public officer, Chombo is accused of having received an application from City of Harare for a change of use for an open space in Helensvale into a residential area in September 2006.

He allegedly used his ministerial power as the Local Government minister to allocate it to a company he co-owns, called Harvest –Net Enterprises.

The property is worth $2 700 000.

On the third count, Chombo is accused of defrauding the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe through the Crops and Livestock Support Facility where he received $414 billion in Zimbabwean dollars.

The court said Chombo did not use the money for the intended purpose, which was buying capital equipment that included a 30 tonne lorry, 30 tonne truck and combine harvester, among others.

He is said to have issued some cheques mainly through CBZ Bank for other purposes.

Meanwhile, Chipanga faced charges of publishing or communicating false statements prejudicial to the state as defined in Section 31 (a) (iii) of the Criminal (Codification and Reform) Act Chapter 9.23 or alternatively causing disaffection among the police force or defence forces as defined in section 30 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act.

The charges arose from a press conference where he accused Zimbabwe Defence Forces commander Constantino Chiwenga of stealing money realised from diamond mining in Marange.

The two were represented by Lovemore Madhuku.

Chombo, who wanted to testify on camera chronicled how he was allegedly “abducted from his house by soldiers” and taken to an unknown destination where they drove for an hour.

The former minister said he was blindfolded the entire time and kept in solitary confinement.

He said the armed soldiers broke into his house and ordered him, his wife and maid, who had sought refuge in a bathroom, to lie down on their stomachs.

Chombo alleged the soldiers, who were covering their faces, appeared to be in a hurry, blindfolded him and handcuffed him from the back and took him out of the house through a window.

He was taken into a waiting lorry where three armed men sat on him as he lay by the side.

He said they drove for almost an hour before he was taken into solitary confinement to a place he still doesn’t know.
Chombo was taken back to his house last Wednesday where police were waiting for him.

Chipanga, who appeared before magistrate Josephine Sande, said after receiving a phone call from former Zanu PF commissar Saviour Kasukuwere informing him that armed men were on the prowl and might get to his place, he rushed to Borrowdale Police to seek refuge.

Initially, police accommodated him as he was earlier on assigned an armed officer from the protection unit to guard him during the night before receiving the call from Kasukuwere.

He said when Kasukuwere opted to go to former president Robert Mugabe’s house, he went to Borrowdale Police Station where after a while, armed men came to fish him out. They blindfolded him and threw him in a truck together with his wife.

Chipanga said he was taken to an unknown place where they drove for almost 20 minutes. He claimed he was often assaulted but stayed in solitary confinement until he was taken back to his house where police immediately arrested him.

Madhuku, citing a Supreme Court ruling on Jestina Mukoko’s illegal detention by government agents, said his clients were in unlawful detention for more than a week, hence they deserved to be released because the allowed 48-hour detention period had lapsed.

Despite putting a spirited fight, Madhuku’s quest to have his clients released fell apart as both magistrates dismissed the claim that they were over-detained.

They said they cannot take as a fact that the detention was sanctioned by the law enforcers.

15 Responses to Chombo charged, reveals ordeal

  1. Fairness November 26, 2017 at 5:33 am #

    ED rule of law should be observed , you have a lot of people you need to arrest or just ask them to repay the state, but follow the law

  2. P.B November 26, 2017 at 5:51 am #

    The repression and buying of the judiciary has begun. Mnangagwa will be no different. Everyone in Zanu pf is a criminal and should be prosecuted.

    • king kk November 26, 2017 at 3:34 pm #

      Everyone incuding those in great power of apparatus,supreme force and declarational power must be arrested but how can corrupt leaders arrest fellow corrupt ex friends?

  3. @ chokwadi November 26, 2017 at 6:18 am #

    Kakamamam Kudzi. U were now acting as the 1st son who is extremely spoilt. Where r your million youths whom u claimed were willing to die in defence of the bobster? This should serve as a warning 2 all would be bootlickers

  4. Mgobhozi Wezintabeni November 26, 2017 at 7:08 am #

    No sane person would derive pleasure at the way these Zanu pf went through as narrated,but Chombo should remember that Zapu cadres went through the worst dehumanising treatment ever witnessed in the history of humankind,some lost lives or remain maimed today that is, if they were luck enough to survive such ordeals.Some disappeared forever,to make matters even worse,these have never been procedural under such circumstances presumed dead.The message is loud and clear people when involved in decision making in pillars of state power should never tolerate institutionalisation of human rights abuses.

  5. SHIBOBO November 26, 2017 at 8:19 am #

    It is interesting to note that Mugabe himself even lamented at one who he had protected against corruption charges for a long time would turn against him!!! This does not need a rocket scientist to guess who. Mostly the very man who chaired the Zanu PF central committee meeting last Sunday!!! If the new government is true to its word on corruption, arrest and try him also in accordance with the law, not selective application of the law. There are very few in Zanu who are clean.

  6. mafirakureva November 26, 2017 at 9:44 am #

    Most of the people who are behind you Mr President ED are very corrupt. They have destroyed their respective ministries through corruption. They employed very corrupt Board Members and I want to tell you that they are not wanted.

    First arrest them the same charges being faced by Chombo of corruption is the same some owns half of Matebeleland,Some sold out Parastal land eg National Parks leases given without following tender procedures and there is defiance on their part to correct.

    I appeal to you Mr President Ed to start cleansing ceremony with most vocals ones they want to protect their corrupt means through you.
    To the war veterans dont support corruption if it is done by a war veteran.
    Most Ministers in fact almost all of them have very dirty hands. Most were committing the crime in the name of ZANU PF and that make people to hate the Party.

    The Police CG and his men are very corrupt if it was possible better to fire them all. They are the ones who caused most of public anger. The issue of saying we are doing law enforcement when it is a fund raising means should stop.
    The money from fines should all go to treasury. We are waiting to see your next step Cde President ED. people like you but we want to see how you tackle corruption.
    My advise stop the following
    Slogan Pasi neMhandu who is the Mhandu.
    Kuhukura Mantra stop that because what u will be implying is that those who have different views with you are dogs. At the same time you said you want to uphold constitution and democracy.
    To war veterans if corruption is stopped jobs created people get their money from banks ZANU PF is party of the people.

    • mashambambeva November 27, 2017 at 8:39 am #

      @Mafirakureva..in fact the pasi nemhandu slogan is even more dangerous than the Pasi ne MDC one because later attempts to define the target while the former creates a whole spectrum of possible targets. Its actually daft and dangerous to use such a slogan because within the lower ranks of ZANU its like an bomb to be used on any one who does to agree with them both within and outside the party. Many innocent people died during the war because of such reckless proclamations.

  7. Phidza Hauna Mari November 26, 2017 at 10:36 am #

    @ Shibobo, are you trying to tell us that the ‘most obedient son’ betrayed his once mighty father?

  8. Jamengweni Godonga November 26, 2017 at 12:35 pm #

    The most obedient son knows that is justice was to be done he would never come out of jail. It is there for everyone to see. And Patrick with his statutory instrument to import fuel duty free? Silkhangele masela.

    Who was paid for the 35 elephants sent to China from Vic Falls? Badai pachena otherwise butho bopha yena and keep them where they do not know for a month labo bakuzwe

  9. mutendi mutendi November 26, 2017 at 5:35 pm #

    take obert to book and we may start believing in you…… prove yourself

  10. chido November 26, 2017 at 8:44 pm #

    chipo mutasa of telone is also to be brought to book with his super mandiwanzira they are evil and thieves. chipo used to declare profits in order to get favour but after declaring profit wonyima vashandi vaita kuti uite profit bonus . she is not a good leader she cooks figures to impress the her masters to be declared MD of the year when she is a dictator

  11. Gudo November 27, 2017 at 5:16 am #

    Corruption haiperi zvekumhanya

  12. W.Dumba November 27, 2017 at 10:02 am #

    What surprises me that a certain fellow Kenneth Sharpe is not arrested together with his former master Chombo.
    As the investigation by the anti corruption committee of the city of harare established this sharpe and chombo were both directors of Harvestnet Investment, the company which illegally acquired land.

  13. ten ten November 28, 2017 at 4:07 pm #

    pliz his excellency act accordingly even in zimposts chimbavha chakandira mazai

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