Kamambo’s trial in false start

ZIMBABWE Football Association (Zifa) boss Felton Kamambo’s trial, where he is accused of vote buying, failed to take off after it was postponed to September 14 at the request of his legal team.

BY DESMOND CHINGARANDE

Kamambo (pictured) is accused of bribing Zifa councillors to vote for him in an election where he was pitted against former association president Philip Chiyangwa.

The trial, which was expected to start yesterday, was postponed after the State failed to provide Kambo’s legal team with enough documents in order for him to prepare his defence.The State gave him part of the documents yesterday but consented to the postponement saying they expect to furnish him with all documents before the trial date.

Magistrate Richard Ramaboa then ordered witnesses Chiyangwa and Omega Dube to avail themselves on September 14 for the trial.Ramaboa said if the matter fails to kick off on that day, Kamambo would be removed from remand.

Meanwhile, Premier Soccer League (PSL) boss Farai Jere continued with his freedom bid yesterday where he accused complainants in his case of trying to elbow him out of business.

The Caps United boss is accused of fraud involving supply of Zesa smart meters worth US$3,5 million. He told Harare magistrate Lazini Ncube that the court was being used to sanitise an illegality of trying to cancel his contract at the Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Development Company (ZETDC).

Jere is being jointly charged with ZETDC employees Leornard Chisina and Freeman Chikonzo.The trio was remanded to tomorrow for bail ruling.

Jere’s lawyer Tinofara Hove told the court that ZETDC managers had all along been trying to cancel his contract and have now roped in the courts to sanitise their illegality.

Hove said Jere was a family man, a successful businessman and of fixed abode that he could not flee the jurisdiction of the court.

He further said that police violated his constitutional right by arresting him before completion of investigations.

Chisina also told the court that there was no fraud committed in the matter, saying the factory acceptance test on the meters was conducted in the United Kingdom where the gadgets originated from.

The State is accusing the trio of not procedurally testing the smart meters since they went to a warehouse instead of a factory where the meters were manufactured.

Chisina told the court that the smart meters were cleared by ZETDC before they went to the United Kingdom (UK) for assessment.

He said it was Jere’s company (Helcraw Electrical) that volunteered to have the smart meters tested at the factory to ascertain the right order for shipment.

Chisina further told the court that the ZETDC management was aware of their trip to the UK since the factories of Secure Meters Private Limited were in the UK and India.

He said the meters supplied by the bidders Helcraw Electrical and Paramount Company passed with over 90%.

He further said he had no reason to flee the court’s jurisdiction saying he was looking forward to exposing everything in court to clear his name.

Chikonzo also testified saying he was surprised that the complainants were saying ZETDC was prejudiced since the same meters were currently being used to collect revenue for the power utility.

He said he was not forced to sign the factory acceptance test since he witnessed the whole process, adding that before his suspension in June this year, he had never heard of any issues concerning the smart meters’ deficiencies.

The State represented by George Manokore has insisted that the trio went to a warehouse instead of a factory, hence acted in a fraudulent manner.

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