Former Zimra Boss Struggles To Meet Bail Conditions, Begs Court To Revise Bail
Former Zimra Commissioner-General Gershem Pasi yesterday told the court that he could not afford to pay the $5000 bail which had been proposed by the prosecution.
Pasi also said that he could not provide the title deeds for a house worth $200 000 because his two houses were bonded on a mortgage to CBZ bank. Speaking through his lawyers Farai Mushoriwa and Innocent Chingarande, Pasi said,
The State recognises bail in one breath but takes it away in another through its punitive conditions. Pasi has been unemployed since 2016, so he cannot afford the bail required by the State. Bail should be granted to ensure that he avails himself for the administration of justice. However, the bail required by the State is excessive given the circumstances. In simple terms it is unaffordable.
The bail conditions were then relaxed to $2000 and surety in the form of a property worth $150 000. Pasi was also asked to continue staying at his given address, to report at Borrowdale Police Station twice a week and to not interfere with State witnesses. Despite this, the former Zimra boss complained that the bail conditions were still excessive leading to Chief Magistrate Mishrod Guvamombe to advise him to apply for bail variation.
Pasi is facing charges of criminal abuse of office after he allegedly inflated the cost of an Invoice Management System for the tax collector from US$11,8 million to US$32,6 million. He allegedly subcontracted a local company to provide information, communication technology equipment from China despite a directive from the government which said they should deal with the suppliers directly without going through a middleman.
Pasi was remanded to November 22.
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