FORMER Midlands State University (MSU) bursar, Mamelo Moyo, who was last year slapped with a five-year jail term together with her husband, Melusi, for swindling the learning institution of more than $150 000, faces trial on a fresh fraud charge, after her application for stay of prosecution was dismissed by the Constitutional Court (ConCourt) yesterday.
BY CHARLES LAITON
Mamelo, whose matter was dealt with in her absence, had filed an application in terms of section 175(4) of the Constitution, arguing her right to equal protection of the law and right to a fair hearing had been infringed by the State, which sought to bring fresh charges against her founded substantially on similar or same facts, which the prosecution was aware of at the time of her first trial.
But, Chief Justice Luke Malaba said the magistrate and Mamelo’s lawyers should not have referred the matter to the ConCourt.
“This is another case of concern to this court, the matter should not have been referred to the ConCourt by the court a quo, or the legal practitioners should not have sought referral.
“It is clear the matter ought to have proceeded to trial,” he said, before dismissing Mamelo’s matter.
In his heads of argument, prosecutor, Tapiwa Mapfuwa submitted that Mamelo had committed the offence on her own and was not jointly charged with her husband, as was the case in the initial matter.
“The applicant (Mamelo) is alleged to have committed the current eight counts on her own and she was to face trial alone … The evidence in relation to the first 24 counts of corruptly concealing from a principal a personal interest in a transaction related to a company called Netabelt Investments and the current charges relate to a company called Black Rain (Pvt) Ltd,” he said.
“The charges in relation to the current eight counts are not founded on similar facts, as the first 24 counts, as the companies involved were different and in relation to the 24 counts the applicant was jointly charged with Melusi Moyo.”
Mamelo and Melusi, who was also employed by MSU, as the acting director of works, had, in the previous matter, pleaded not guilty, when they were arraigned before Gweru regional magistrate, Morgan Nemadire facing several counts of fraud and corruption.