BY JAIROS SAUNYAMA
Five bogus Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc) officials, who moved around farms in Marondera extorting farmers before kidnapping and robbing a fuel dealer, have been sentenced to an effective seven years in jail each by Marondera magistrate Arnold Maburo.
Sabelo Dube (40), Aaron Muzungu (45), Donald Gabaza (39), Billy Masewe (33) and Kudakwashe Nyika (30) pleaded not guilty to charges of impersonation, kidnaping and robbery, but were convicted due to overwhelming evidence.
According to court papers, on November 15 last year at around 7pm, the accused persons, who were driving in a white Mitsubishi Pajero (registration number ADN5342), approached Netsai Maurukira (55) of Kendor Farm before Dube showed her a fake Zacc identity card.
The accused persons then told Maurukira that they were investigating the allocation and downsizing of neighbouring New Retreat Farm in Marondera.
Using the same modus operandi, the five approached Milford Farm owned by Marondera Rural District Council chairperson Tichafara Gundo, where they again misrepresented themselves as Zacc officials investigating the downsizing of a neighbouring farm.
The accused persons demanded to meet Gundo, but he refused. They also tried to force their way into the farm, but were denied access by the security guard.
On November 16 at around 8am, the accused persons approached Johane Manwere (24), a fuel dealer at BJP garage in Macheke, where they ordered him to give them 20 litres of petrol.
After getting the fuel, Dube then slapped Manwere before handcuffing him. He then told the complainant that he was under arrest for illegally dealing in fuel.
Muzungu and Gabaza then forced the complainant into their car, while Masewe and Nyika ransacked the bushy area looking for more fuel, but found nothing.
Dube then drove the vehicle towards Rusape while assaulting Manwere using sticks and clenched fists.
It is alleged that Masewe then forcibly took $103 that was in the complainant’s pocket.
The accused persons’ vehicle was then blocked in Headlands by Manwere’s friends, who were following behind before a citizen arrest was effected on them.
John Hama represented the State.