'Jim Kunaka demanded money'

HARARE - Harare Zanu PF youth leader Jim Kunaka has been accused of demanding money from Mashwede employees in order to allow them to construct a service station in Mbare.
During cross-examination, the court heard Kunaka sent one Gunpowder to Isheanesu Maribha, 34, and Gwezuva Changamire, 35, who are employed by Mashwede Diesel Services as general manager and sales representative respectively demanding money as protection fee so as to allow them to proceed with the construction.

Augustine Runesu Chizikani, the lawyer representing the two told the court that Kunaka demanded money from his clients.

“Jim Kunaka demanded money from the accused persons (Maribha and Changamire) so as to allow them to continue construction of the service station. The payment was made at the dictates of the informer (Kunaka) to allow them construction,” said Chizikani.

Chizikani also told the court Maribha and Changamire got to know of Gunpowder after he was sent by Kunaka demanding money from them.

Giving his evidence, Detective Chief Inspector Mutumwa Zvidzyi, said the accused are the ones who gave money to the informant (Kunaka), hence their arrest.

He told the court that if the two had reported the matter to the police they would have arrested Kunaka but they did not.

Mutumwa also told the court the relationship between the two and Kunaka was through Gunpowder whom they used as a mediator.

Maribha and Changamire were arrested after they attempted to bribe Kunaka over the construction of a service station in Harare at corner Harare Street and Cripps Road which had been contested by Mbare Residents’ Committee.

The two allegedly wanted Kunaka to use his political muscle to influence the residents to support the construction of the service station.

The state has closed its case and Chizikani has given a notice to apply for discharge. - Ivan Zhakata

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