BY RICHARD MUPONDE
SHAMVA miner, John Maungwa who has been in custody for reportedly stealing gold ore from his own mine has been released on bail, with his rival Chantelle Chikafu who caused his arrest suffering a blow as she had reportedly returned to his mine while he was in prison.
Maungwa was arrested on Monday last week and he spent two nights in police cells before he was brought to court on Wednesday, where he was remanded in custody for bail ruling on Christmas Eve after the state had opposed bail.
Chikafu who once masqueraded as President Emmerson Mnangagwa‘s daughter had made a report to the police that Maungwa had stolen 390 tonnes of gold ore, which she had mined together with Shamva North MP, Oscar Gorerino Zanu PF.
Maungwa was not asked to plead to theft of gold ore when he appeared before provincial magistrate, Tinashe Ndokera and was remanded to January 12 on $ 20 000 bail.
Maungwa had been denied bail after the State through the arresting officer, Detective Assistant Inspector Samson Pasipamire from Bindura Criminal Investigations Minerals, Flora and Fauna Unit had opposed the granting of bail.
Ndokera had no kind words for Pasipamire saying that there was no need to deny Maungwa bail as his docket indicated that investigations had been completed on December 22.
He also got a backlash from Maungwa‘s lawyers, Gumbo and Associates, after he failed to give credible reasons why he arrested and detained the miner in the presence of High Court orders in his favour.
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Pasipamire in his reasons for arresting the miner said Maungwa later took gold ore from a place outside his Wickman 23 Mine, an assertion which was dismissed as the High Court orders gave unfettered mining rights to him to mine.
Charges against Maungwa emanated when he had returned to his mine after High Court judge Justice Jacob Manzunzu on April 29, ruled that he be restored possession of Wickman 23 Mine in Umfurudzi Game Park, which Chikafu’s gang working in cahoots with Gorerino, had allegedly violently grabbed from him.
It is alleged that Maungwa‘s arrest is a ploy by Chikafu and Gorerino to fix him for winning the court case which gave him unfettered mining rights. Follow Richard on Twitter @muponderichard