High Court blocks Zacc’s UZ search over Grace PhD saga

THE High Court has, for the second time this year, declined to grant the Zimbabwe Anti-corruption Commission (Zacc) an order to search the University of Zimbabwe (UZ)’s offices with a view to seize documents and information pertaining to former First Lady Grace Mugabe’s PhD degree.

BY CHARLES LAITON

Early last month, Zacc obtained a warrant of search and seizure from the magistrates’ court after which it proceeded to the tertiary institution with a view to conduct the search, but the UZ approached the court challenging Zacc’s conduct and the warrant was then nullified by Justice Lavender Makoni on February 16.

Undeterred, Zacc last week obtained yet another warrant of search and seizure, claiming it had properly obtained the same, but the UZ, through its registrar, Noah Ariel Mutongoreni, approached the High Court challenging the new warrant.

On March 12, High Court judge Justice Alpheus Chitakunye ruled in favour of the UZ.

“The warrant of search and seizure issued to the first and second respondents [Zacc and investigating officer Detective Sergeant Richard Machinya] by the third respondent [Harare magistrate] be and is, hereby, set aside for being null and void and of no force and effect,” Justice Chitakunye said, adding “the first and second respondents shall pay applicant’s (UZ) costs of suit on the ordinary scale.”

In his affidavit deposed on behalf of the tertiary institution, Mutongoreni said he had once again approached the court seeking an order declaring the new warrant of search and seizure null and void, adding it had been illegally obtained.

However, in response to the application, Zacc secretary Silence Pondo said the search and seizure warrant which had been granted by a Harare magistrate was valid and fully compliant with the provisions of the law, which position was again not upheld by the court.

Machinya had also deposed to his affidavit, saying the matter, which is under investigation, related to the names, Ntombizodwa Grace Mugabe and Ntombizodwa Grace Marufu, hence, the reason why the anti-graft body was seeking the warrant of search and seizure to get to the bottom of the matter.

8 Comments

  1. nutty dreadlock

    haewa kani wat the hell if they arec so innocent varikurambirei kusechwa this country is a joke and we say we are at the dawn of a new age.

  2. I do not know what the problem is. The whole country knows that Grace does not have a PhD but a paper claiming that she has. So what is the issue? Let her apply for a job at Harvard, Cambridge, Massachusetts or wherever and see if they will ever attempt to engage her even just to sweep the lecture rooms, let alone lectureship, with her fake PhD. It is just useless.

  3. VICE CHANCELLOR RESIGN

    The High Court knows that the truth will damage the image of the institution (UZ). Facts don’t lie, UZ is corrupt to the extend that dissertations are being done by 3rd parties who are not registered with the institution for as little as $30 to $50 and that is embarrassing for the institution of that standard. # GRACEMUGABE’S THESIS SHOULD BE DECLARED NULL AND VOID AS IT HAS 2016 AND 2017 SOURCES AND YET IT WAS COMPLETED IN 2014. VICE CHANCELLOR PLEASE RESIGN HAUNYAREWO VANHU HERE NEMA STUDENTS AKO CHAIWO HAUSI KUMANYARA. Its embarrassing for such a great institution to be associated with this scandal…

  4. True it’s a shame….. only the devil can be witness to such heinous acts by our controversial judiciary systems.A very unfortunate situation displayed by our High Court to a country of suchlike high literacy rate in Africa….. this leaves a lot to be desired.

  5. Then as a nation we have to scrutinize our bench of judges at the high court,they have lost credibility;in the face of such an open fraudulent deal involving such high profile individuals like Nyagura & Grace then you block the way to their investigation by zacc;where we have a scenario of a lower court repeatedly authorizing the search the high court continuously turning it down-are they not reading fr the same hem book;then it means there is something wrong at the high court-this is high profile crime;no one should b seem to defend it or the president shld use his prerogative rights to set aside such laws to allow Grace’s full investigation

  6. What does the UZ have to hide?

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  7. Its a waste of time investigating Grace . All she wanted to get was how to say “Stop it ” She will not use that paper anywhere and has no need for it anymore so why investigate her . Stop it !! ZAAC should deal with cases that are important to the nation . Leave Grace to lick her wounds in peace .

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