Westwood is a drug addict — Mliswa

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Former Warriors fitness trainer and commercial farmer,Temba Mliswa, has called Paul Westwood a “drug addict” and applied for discharge at the close of the State case in a matter in which he allegedly attempted to grab ownership of Westwood’s vehicle accessories company.

Mliswa’s lawyer Charles Chinyama said Westwood was a self-confessed drug addict and was on medical rehabilitation.

“It is important for this court to take judicial notice of the fact that Paul Westwood’s mental status and capacity to give evidence in court cannot be trusted and therefore there is need to subject his evidence to strenuous scrutiny in the absence of any certificate from a qualified person certifying that he is mentally fit to give evidence in court.

“The court might be dealing (with all due respect) with the evidence of a person not in his senses,” Chinyama submitted.

The State closed its case after regional magistrate Never Katiyo dismissed an application by the Attorney-General’s Office to call lawyers, Archiford Rutanhira from Scanlen and Holderness and Gerald Nqobile Mlotshwa from GN Mlotshwa and Company to give evidence against Mliswa and his colleagues.

In his application for discharge filed at the magistrate court on Wednesday, Mliswa, through Chinyama, urged magistrate Katiyo to treat Westwood’s evidence with caution.

The State alleges in December 2009, Mliswa visited Noshio Motors and misrepresented that he was the vice-president of Affirmative Action Group and had been sent by Saviour Kasukuwere and that President Mugabe was aware of his take-over of Noshio Motors under the guise of indigenisation.

Mliswa denied the assertions and submitted that he never made such utterances but said it was a desperate attempt by Westwood to drag in big name, Kasukuwere and Mugabe, for his personal benefit.

Mliswa denied ever threatening Westwood or illegally taking over the affairs of Noshio Motors but submitted that he acted on the strength of the deed of trust that had been formed by Hammarskjold Banda to run his 50% shares in the company to which Mliswa and his colleagues were trustees.

Mliswa further said he personally handed over a letter to Westwood on September 18 2009 wherein he introduced himself as a person who was acting on the strength of a deed of trust by Banda.

Chinyama said Westwood conceded, in his evidence-in-chief that the letter written by Mliswa did not provide for violent take-over of his company or his share in the company but rather for efficient administration of Banda’s 50% in Noshio Motors.

Mliswa is jointly charged with Banda, Brendaly Banda, Alfred Mwatiwamba, Martin Mutasa and George Marere.

Attorney-General representative, Godwin Nyasha is expected to file the State’s response to the application Thursday and magistrate Katiyo will give his determination on Friday.

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