'ED's Anti-Corruption team causes confusion'

HARARE - Ex-Cabinet minister Walter Chidakwa’s lawyer has complained that President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s Special Anti-Corruption Unit is causing confusion that has stalled progress in prosecution of alleged graft matters that are before the courts.

Advocate Sylvester Hashiti is representing Chidakwa in a criminal abuse of office matter the former minister is alleged to have presided over a mine claim dispute which his office was not authorised to handle.

Chidakwa is being jointly charged with his former permanent secretary Francis Gudyanga who is represented by Mugiya and Macharaga Law Firm.

However, a partner of the law firm Zivanai Macharaga is also part of the Special Anti-Corruption Unit yet their lawyer Tatenda Muvhami represents Gudyanga in the same case.

In another matter, Chidakwa and Gudyanga are accused of pocketing board sitting allowances; Gudyanga is represented by Norman Mugiya and again the Special Anti-Corruption Unit Macharaga is attached to is prosecuting the matter.

Hashiti has argued that it was irregular for the same law firm to enjoy prosecution and give defence assistance simultaneously.

He said the trial had been postponed four times saying it was difficult to make any follow-up because offices of Mnangagwa’s special team are not known.

Harare regional magistrate Hosea Mujaya concurred with Hashiti that the State’s house was not in order.

“There is so much confusion in the manner that this case is being handled,” Mujaya said.

Hashiti added: “Mugiya and Macharaga are representing the accused person in this case and in another case act as prosecution. It is highly irregular, unethical and unlawful that the same law firm gives defence assistance to an accused person and a partner of that same law firm prosecutes that same client.”

Hashiti will present a full argument on October 4.

According to State papers in May 2015, Gudyanga, who was the permanent secretary in the ministry of Mines and Mining Development received appeal correspondence from Ronald Mugangavari against a determination by the provincial mining commissioners for Masvingo and Midlands, respectively over a claim ownership case.

The appeal was allegedly in connection with the mine claim ownership dispute between Midway 21 Gold Mine, owned by K & G Syndicate represented by Herbert Hwekwete, and Clifton 15 Mine owned by Mugangavari.

The dispute allegedly involved issues to do with the mine boundaries.

Comments (2)

Not surprising the illegitimate anti-corruption team is a deliberate ploy to try and curry favour with international money lenders. As well as throw spanners into any real moves to curb corruption ( in case friends will be targeted who will spill the beans. The original ZACC would not have wanted a stupid roll of catch and release.

Sinyo - 12 September 2018

Its simply conflicting of interests and its a matter for the defense team to bring it to the judges attention!

legosta - 13 September 2018

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