A HARARE magistrate yesterday dismissed an application for refusal of further remand by former NetOne chief executive officer Reward Kangai, who is facing 20 counts of criminal abuse of office and concealing personal interests in a transaction from his principal.
BY DESMOND CHINGARANDE
Kangai had asked magistrate Rumbidzai Mugwagwa to remove him from remand, saying the State failed to provide him with a trial date within a reasonable period.
The State told the court that Kangai’s case was different from others as it requires extra-territorial investigations. But Kangai argued that one of the State witnesses named Marufu whom the police alleges is in South Africa was actually in the country and was staying three houses from his residence.
However, Mugwagwa dismissed the application, saying the matter was complex hence could not be removed from remand.
Allegations are that between 2009 and December 2015, Kangai, being a public officer on four different occasions allegedly handpicked and procured several service providers for NetOne without following due tender processes as outlined in the State Procurement Act.
The State alleges that sometime in October 2014, Kangai unlawfully and corruptly appointed and showed favour to Bopela Family Trust by sanctioning advance rental payment of $10 500 covering a period of 21 months. He also allegedly sanctioned rental advancement to Richwood Sports Club ($33 000) covering five years, Avondale Christian Church ($27 000) for three years and house number 514 Chipembere Road, Windsor Park, Ruwa ($5 000).
It is further alleged that Kangai approved a loan to Bopela Group amounting to $80 000 without approval from the board and his actions caused financial prejudice to NetOne amounting to $155 000.
Between January 2014 and December 2015, Kangai, as an accounting officer, failed to comply with Statutory Instrument 171 of 2002 and handpicked companies to provide services without going to tender. The companies included Espol Advertising, Sectional Poles South Africa, Convergys (Pvt) Ltd, Bopela Group, Gemalto, Afrosoft and Imago Communications prejudicing the State of $17,594 million.
It is further alleged on eight different occasions, Kangai allegedly abused his authority by giving directives to his subordinates on the acquisition of base station sites. The procedures required that three survey reports be made before final selection of a suitable site. Kangai allegedly used his authority and handpicked sites belonged to his close associates.
The States alleged that sometime in 2014, Kangai allegedly ordered the installation of a NetOne base station along Lomagundi Road at stand number 103 Goodhope. The property belonged to Joyce Kangai, who is his aunt and did not disclose to the board of directors his interests and personal relationship.
Ropafadzo Botsch appeared for the State.