THE matter in which the former Zimbabwe National Road Administration (Zinara) board chairman Albert Mugabe is facing charges of authorising and tendering false letters of undertaking to set off a mortgage loan facility without his board’s approval, yesterday failed to start after it emerged that the person who was representing the parastatal in court has since left the organisation.
Mugabe is being charged with criminal abuse of office.
The State led by Nyikadzino Machingura applied for the postponement of the matter to another date, saying he wanted time to approach the board to make a resolution to select the person to represent Zinara in the matter.
Wilfred Ramwi was supposed to represent Zinara before he left the organisation.
Mr Machingura said he could not proceed with the matter until the Zinara board makes the resolution.
“We cannot proceed with the matter, with the person who is representing the organisation no longer with the organisation.
“It might be prejudice to the State,” he said.
“We need the board to give us the person who will represent them.
“The company secretary Martiline Mujokoro, whom we thought will be suitable, is also supposed to leave the organisation anytime.
“In light of that, we are asking the court to give us ample time for the board to resolve on who will represent the organisation,” said Mr Machingura.
Mugabe, through his lawyer Mr Admire Rubaya, opposed the application arguing that the last time the matter was postponed, State indicated that it was ready for trial.
“They also did not tell us when Wilfred Ramwi left the organisation.
“There is more to it than what has been said,” said Rubaya.
Lawyer Rubaya also argued that the State was likely to record fresh statements, further stalling progress into the trial.
“If the State is not ready, let Mugabe be removed from remand. We apply that Mugabe be removed from remand if the State is not yet ready.
“Whenever they are ready, they can subpoena us,” he said.
In his response Mr Machingura said there will be no further investigations to be carried out, saying the State did not make an application to have investigations since they have other witnesses from Zinara who are also board members.
“When the matter was pencilled for trial, we realised there was need for a resolution. We told the organisation through the investigative officer, who told us that Mr Ramwi was no longer with the company.
“So, we advised them that the company should sit down and give us a resolution,” he said.
Magistrate Mr Lazini Ncube in his ruling said his worry was on the witness, who were always coming with no progress being made.
Magistrate Ncube set the matter to June 17 for trial.