Former Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) deputy director-general Lovemore Mukandi was on Thursday issued with a warrant of arrest by Harare regional magistrate Estere Chivasa after he failed to turn up for trial.
His name was called three times outside Court 15 and he did not respond, prompting prosecutor Michael Reza to apply for a warrant of arrest, which was immediately issued by Chivasa.
Mukandi was summoned to appear in court on Thursday for trial on charges of defrauding the organisation of funds that were meant for construction of houses.
It is the State’s case that Mukandi, who was tasked with the supervision of the construction of “safe” houses for the CIO, flouted tender procedures and contracted a company owned by his friends.
He is alleged to have misrepresented to the organisation about the amounts required and was given over ZW$16 million, which he converted to his own use.
Mukandi, who fled Zimbabwe and sought refuge in Canada in 2001, was deported back home last month and immediately arrested on arrival.
But when he appeared before Harare magistrate Donald Ndirowei, the court ruled there was no extradition law between Canada and Zimbabwe and that Mukandi had appeared in court as a result of his deportation, not extradition.
Ndirowei then ruled it was clear Mukandi had not absconded trial or violated his bail conditions and that there was no attempt by the State to summon him for trial while he was in Canada.
The magistrate said the State could proceed by way of summons once it was ready for trial now that Mukandi was in the jurisdiction of the local courts and police.
Mukandi was charged together with Rick Mubvumbi, David Nyabando and Mohamed Ahmed Meman in 1999 before skipping the country.