Mandiwanzira trial fails to kick off... Case postponed to mid-July » ZOOM Zimbabwe News

Mandiwanzira trial fails to kick off… Case postponed to mid-July

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The trial of former ICT Minister Supa Mandiwanzira on allegations that he appointed his ministerial personal assistant to a parastal board without him being an employee of government, failed to kick off yesterday as the state applied to have the matter postponed pending High Court proceedings.

The defence consented to the postponement to July 16th.

Mandiwanzira is being accused of appointing his ministerial personal assistant, Tawanda Chinembiri on the board of the Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory (Potraz).

The state alleges that the appointment of Chinembiri was criminal abuse of office as the said assistant was not an employee of government.

In earlier court proceedings, the defence lawyer Advocate Thembinkosi Magwaliba instructed by Selby Hwacha of Dube Manikai Hwacha dismissed state assertions that Chinembiri was not an employee of government.

He argued that according to its own state papers, Chinembiri was appointed as deputy director and PA to the Minister in March of 2015 and his appointment to the Potraz board was in February 2016.

Magwaliba argued in court then that under the circumstances, the state had no case against Mandiwanzira and proceeding with the matter was tantamount to malicious prosecution and an abuse of prosecutorial authority.

Yesterday magistrate Hoseah Mujaya granted the state application to have the trial postponed to next month pending the outcome of proceedings in High Court.

In April, High Court judge Mathonsi quashed the main abuse of office charge against Mandiwanzira but the state has applied for rescission of the judgement. It is that rescission application that stalled the trial on the second count to commenced yesterday.

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Mandiwanzira has complained in court that he has not committed any crime and the charges against him were a result of political persecution.

He told trial magistrate Elijah Makomo that all he was being accused of was absurd and he had done everything with the authority of his principals.

The Nyanga South legislator said instead of being arrested, he should have been congratulated for recovering USD30 million that had been fleeced from Netone. — ZOOMZimbabwe

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