Zvimba RDC CEO in court for criminal abuse of office

Zvimba Rural District Council (ZRDC) chief executive Peter HIohla yesterday appeared at the Harare Magistrates’ Court, facing charges of prejudicing the local authority of potential revenue by reducing land sizes of some beneficiaries and pocketing the difference from the sales realised.

BY DESMOND CHINGARANDE

Hlohla (40) was not asked to plead when he appeared before magistrate Josephine Sande, who remanded him to April 6 on $300 bail.

Hlohla, who is represented by Dumisani Mtombeni, successfully applied to have his bail conditions not to visit the council offices, as been proposed by the State, scrapped. He argued his employer had not suspended him and it will be in breach of the Labour Act to prevent him from going to work.

Allegations are that sometime in 2011, ZRDC entered into a partnership to develop upmarket stands, all-inclusive residential, industrial, commercial, Zesa and water tanks at Haydon located on the outskirts of Harare in Mt Hampden area.

The State alleges ZRDC provided the land and the developer capital to fund the project. It is alleged that between January 2013 to December 2015, Hlohla being a public officer and on 12 occasions offered residential stands to various individuals.

Hlohla was the sole custodian of the general maps and dispensation certificates from the Surveyor General which shows the actual stand sizes in Hydon.

It is alleged on 12 different occasions Hlohla originated offer letters to various individuals on the waiting lists for residential stands. However, Hlohla in apparent show of favour to certain beneficiaries reduced the stand sizes on the offer letter to the prejudice of ZRDC. Sebastian Mutizirwa appeared for the State.

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