Zacc officers harassed Mphoko, court told

Zacc officers harassed Mphoko, court told
Published: 22 August 2019 (165 Views)
A LAWYER representing under-fire former vice president Phelekezela Mphoko has called for an investigation to be instituted against the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc) officers who allegedly "harassed" him in an attempt to effect an "illegal arrest".

The lawyer, Zibusiso Ncube of Ncube and Partners, said this when Mphoko appeared before provincial magistrate Enias Magate yesterday fac- ing charges of abuse of office during his tenure as the country's number two.

Magate referred Mphoko's matter to Harare where he is set to appear in court on September 14. He is out on $1 000 bail. In his submission, Ncube said the harassment and assault that his client went through cannot be ignored.

"It should be placed on record that my client faced harassment and an assault on his constitu- tional right, the right to privacy and the right to personal dignity on Friday 16 when officials from Zacc stormed his urban residence and purported to effect an arrest on him which was illegal and not sanctioned by the law.

"The merciless attack on him caused trauma on his family and him and his dignity," Ncube told the court.

Representing the State, prosecutor Thompson Hove promised a probe.

According to court papers, on May 6, 2016, Zacc received a report of allegations of fraud and crimi- nal abuse of duty against Zinara officials.

Investigations that ensued resulted in the arrest of Zinara acting chief executive Moses Juma and Davison Norupiri. The two were charged with criminal abuse of duty as defined in section 174 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act and their warned and cautioned statements were recorded on July 12, 2016.

After the arrest, Juma and Norupiri were taken to Avondale Police Station the following day pending their appearance in court. On the same day at around 6pm, Mphoko, who was at the time the acting president, stormed the police station and ordered the immediate release of Juma and Norupiri from lawful police custody.

The officer-in-charge complied with Mphoko's order and released the two men before Mphoko drove away with them in his car. It was stated that Mphoko acted in a manner that was inconsistent with his duties as a public officer, which was in violation of section 106 of the Constitution.

As part of his bail condition, Magate ruled that Mphoko should stay at his given residence, hand over his passport to the court clerk, not interfere with State witnesses as well as reporting to the CID commercial crimes division in Bulawayo once every Friday.

- dailynews

Tags: Zacc,
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