LUPANE A senior Matabeleland North Zanu PF provincial executive member, John Roberts Khumalo, was yesterday convicted of stealing two diesel-powered pumps given to the Jotsholo community by donors.
Khumalo, who is Zanu PFs provincial secretary for legal affairs, was found guilty on two counts of theft when he appeared before Lupane magistrate Takudzwa Gwazemba.
He was remanded to April 25 for sentence after his lawyer, Solomon Mguni, requested for more time to prepare his mitigation.
Khumalo (57) is out of custody on $100 bail.
The court heard sometime in the 1990s, the Norwegian Development Agency donated two water pumps to the Jotsholo community for cattle-rearing projects where Khumalo was a ward councillor.
Due to vandalism of public property in the area, the pumps were removed from the project site and kept at villagers homes.
Sometime in 2008 after Khumalo lost the elections, he took the pumps under the pretext they were going for repairs.
He later sold one of the pumps to Buster Magwizi, chairman of the Zipra Veterans Trust, and lent the other one to Christel Dube, his neighbour.
But Khumalo denied the charges during trial insisting he only kept custody of the engines to safeguard them after some villagers attempted to sabotage the project.
Khumalo claimed he lent the pumps to Magwizi and Dube believing they would return them.
However, Magwizi told the court Khumalo sold him the pump for $1 600 while Dube said the other pump had been lent to him.