Two Harare businessmen Wicknell Chivayo and Genius “Ginimbi” Kadungure, who are facing two counts of conning Zanu PF Chegutu West MP Dexter Nduna and another miner of R1 581 890 in a botched mining equipment supply deal, denied the allegations when they appeared in court yesterday.
Kadungure and Chivayo told the court that they have had no communication or business dealings with the complainants.
Kadungure’s lawyer Jonathan Samukange said his client was a victim of the fraud and he had already paid one of the complainants, Evon Gatawa, off to avoid his name being dragged in the mud.
He said he did not know Gatawa and had never talked to him before the case and was surprised to be arrested for an offence he knew nothing about.
On count one, the State alleges that on December 4, 2013, Gatawa sent his brother, Enock, to South Africa to purchase pumps from Transco Civil Engineering, which is allegedly owned by Kadungure and Chivayo and holds an account with Absa Bank. He was asked to deposit R1 046 890 for the purchase of 10 flight pumps into the Absa account.
After the transfer, Enock was told by Transco Civil Engineering that they would send the pumps via DHL in three days’ time.
On December 12, Gatawa went to DHL airport branch to collect the pumps and was shocked to receive a parcel of mobile phone chargers. That is when he realised that he had been duped, the court heard.
On the second count, Kadungure allegedly swindled Nduna’s construction firm, Badon Enterprises (Pvt) Ltd, of R500 000, also in November 2012.
The State alleges Kadungure referred Nduna to his bogus company on the pretext that it was a recommended supplier.
Gatawa testified that he had reported the matter to the police, but approached Kadungure for settlement because the case was taking “too long”.
They agreed on a restitution of $100 000 and Kadungure had already paid $50 000 but was delaying settling the balance.
He later revised the figure to $88 000 under cross examination by Samukange.
However, Gatawa told the court that he did not have any evidence linking Chivayo to the case.
He only discovered that Chivayo was on the charge sheet on the day he went to withdraw the matter against Kadungure at National Prosecution Authority chief law officer, Chris Mutangadura’s office.
Presiding magistrate Morgen Nemadire postponed the matter to today for continuation. Chivayo is represented by Lewis Uriri and Wilson Manase.
Nduna is scheduled to testify today.
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