Chombo gets 90-day jail term

HARARE - Home Affairs minister Ignatius Chombo has been slapped with a 90-day jail term by the High Court, after he was found guilty of contempt of court for failing to comply with an order directing him to facilitate the release of $78 000 confiscated from a Mutare businessman, Tendai Blessing Mangwiro.

Police, who are answerable to Chombo, seized the cash following Mangwiro’s arrest in 2008 on theft charges, with the cops failing to return the money which was held as an exhibit, following Mangwiro’s acquittal in 2012.

Police claimed that the cash had been handed to the then complainant Andrea Nsaka Nsaka, and despite the High Court ordering them to return Mangwiro’s money, they failed to do so.

“It is declared that the respondent (Chombo) is guilty of contempt of the court order of this honourable court granted under case number HC4261/16 in that: He has wilfully disregarded the court orders in case number HC4766/13 and HC 4261/16 and refused to comply with them and further preventing the applicant (Mangwiro) from enjoying his right as established in the court.

“The respondent (Chombo) is sentenced to 90 days’ imprisonment with labour until full compliance by the respondent.

“The term of imprisonment shall be wholly suspended on condition that the respondent fully complies with the court orders … This order shall itself constitute and serve as a writ for the arrest, detention and lodging of the respondent to prison,” High Court judge Emmy Tsanga’s ruling reads.

She further ordered Chombo to pay the cost of the lawsuit.

Chombo, through the Attorney-General’s office wrote an affidavit yesterday, claiming that he had not been personally served with the application, further demanding that the matter be postponed.

However, this was rejected by the court, which noted that the minister had long been aware of the court application.

This contempt of court application comes after Mangwiro also won another High Court order, demanding Chombo to facilitate the release of another Z$46 135 000 000 which is equivalent to $1,5 million which was also confiscated from him in 2008.

“The respondent (Chombo) is ordered and directed to comply with statutory duty cast upon him in terms of Section 5 (2) of the State Liabilities Act (Chapter 8:14) that is to cause to be paid out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund the sums of money awarded to applicant (Mangwiro) by the order of this honourable court,” High Court judge Owen Tagu said separately.

Tagu further ordered Chombo to comply with the order within 14 days, failure of which he would also be declared to be in contempt of the court order, in addition to being also slapped with the costs of the suit.

Comments (5)

A litmus test for the justice system, lets see if he gets to serve or pays the plaintiff. Waiting to see what the ruling will be for the other two ministers.

Hwacha - 10 November 2016

We wait to see

Dzimbabwe - 11 November 2016

ah ah ah mazviwona ka kuti idzi imbavha a government of thieves

NUTTY DREADLOCK - 11 November 2016

The Police are there supposedly to protect law abiding citizens against thieves and the Police should be the ones setting a good example to everyone as honest, upright, decent individuals? Yet some of the biggest crooks can be found lurking in the ZRP, devious and extremely dishonest people who force desperately poor people to pay bribes at road blocks - they readily accept back handers to overlook crimes committed by big criminals. In the old days, even under the Smith regime it never used to be like this - in those days they were good, reliable and extremely efficient . I know so because my father was once a Policeman and I still remember him talking about the good old days and how honest the Policemen were. Such a shame that things have turned out this way. Independence was supposed to bring us all a better standard of living and more freedom - we are experiencing the exact opposite under these pseudo Marxists.

Mbewa - 11 November 2016

will they arrest themselves???????

chinoz - 11 November 2016

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