BY MIRIAM MANGWAYA
FORMER Public Service minister Priscah Mupfumira, who is facing graft charges, was yesterday issued with a warrant of arrest after she failed to attend trial as she is in South Africa on parliamentary business.
Mupfumira and her co-accused Ngoni Masoka, former permanent secretary in the ministry, were set to appear for continuation of their trial on two counts of criminal abuse of office.
Mupfumira, a senator, is in South Africa on official parliamentary business following release of her diplomatic passport by the courts.
Her lawyer, Admire Rubaya, challenged the warrant of arrest, saying it was unjustified since Mupfumira had been cleared to travel to South Africa by President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
The State alleges that Mupfumira and Masoka fraudulently secured US$90 000 from the National Social Security Authority and purchased personal vehicles without approval from Treasury on two counts.
The State also alleges that Mupfumira used State funds for air tickets and upkeep of her personal aides to attend her daughter’s wedding in South Africa.
Mupfumira recently applied to be tried separately from her principal witness Masoka, but magistrate Munamato Mutevedzi dismissed the application.
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