Mashwede diesel workers summoned

HARARE - Two Mashwede Diesel workers accused of trying to bribe Zanu PF’s Harare youth leader Jim Kunaka have been summoned back to court.

Isheanesu Maribha, 34 and Gwezuva Changamire, 35, are accused of offering a bribe to Kunaka to use his influence to allow for the construction of a $1,2 million service station and food court.

Zanu PF activists in Harare’s Mbare suburb have been resisting the construction of the project.

Maribha and Changamire yesterday appeared before magistrate Nomsa Sabarauta on bribery charges.

The two, who are employed by the firm as general manager and sales representative respectively, had earlier this month been freed after their lawyer.

Augustine Runesu Chizikani, successfully applied to have them removed from remand.

The court heard Mashwede Diesel Services was allocated a stand in Harare at corner Harare Street and Cripps Road to build a service station in January this year.

The allocation, according to state papers, allegedly angered the Mbare Residents Committee, which claims it previously applied for the same property but was told the place was reserved for the expansion of Matapi Police Station. Kunaka also leads the residents’ committee.

Local Zanu PF supporters staged demonstrations against the construction of the service station.

Prosecutor Patience Chimusaru told the court that Shepherd Hungwe, also known as Gunpowder, approached Kunaka to urge him to advise local residents to halt the demonstrations.

According to the prosecution, Gunpowder allegedly offered $15 000 to Kunaka on behalf of Maribha and Changamire as bribe money.

It is alleged Kunaka called the police and a trap was set, leading to the arrest of the two and the recovery of $5 000 of the alleged bribery money.

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