HomeNewsMliswa gets nod to bring in RBZ witness

Mliswa gets nod to bring in RBZ witness

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Embattled controversial businessman Temba Mliswa yesterday received his first victory in court when magistrate Donald Ndirowei ruled that the former fitness trainer had the right to bring contested witness, central bank divisional chief Morris Mpofu, to testify in his bail application.
The state had objected to Mpofu being called to give evidence as a defence witness arguing the central bank’s senior employee was lined up as a state witness.
Mpofu is expected to give evidence in court today.
“In making a finding, this court will make reference to the Yusuf case 1997 (1) Zimbabwean Law Report (ZLR) 102 (H),” the magistrate said.
“The accused is entitled to have his witness attendance enforced by the machinery of the state and the judicial process. The bumbling and ineffectual explanation by the state prosecutor in her broken promise falls far short in affording the accused access to a fair hearing.”
The objection by the state was effectively overruled.
“Wherefore, it is ordered that the objection by the state is hereby overruled and the state is compelled to subpoena the witness for the defence. This will not prejudice the state case at all since this is a bail application, not a trial,” Ndirowei ruled.
Prosecutor Tendai Chiduwa on Monday said upon further consultations, the state had concluded it would not want to jeopardise its case by allowing the defence to lead evidence from Mpofu who was also considered a state witness.
The prosecution said calling Mpofu was irrelevant to the bail application because the state did not see where the central bank’s official would fit in.
Mliswa’s lawyer Charles Chinyama argued that Mpofu was being called to clarify certain issues pertaining to documents the state showed to Detective Inspector Samuel Masvokweni.
Chinyama said Mpofu was not being called to trial but to test the waters as regards the strength of the state’s case.
Mliswa has been in custody for a month on cases where he is alleged to have stolen six 60 KVA generators and defrauding the RBZ of $3,5 million.

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