Hebert Zharare Deputy News Editor
FORMER Zanu-PF secretary for Administration Cde Didymus Mutasa reportedly stole all party documents and files from the office he was using, which his lawyers used to prepare an application expected to be filed at the High Court in Harare today.
The discovery of the theft of the documents comes at a time when mystery abounds over the whereabouts of the letter Cde Mutasa purportedly wrote to Sadc as both the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Harare, and the Sadc secretariat in Gaborone, Botswana, do not have a record of the letter.
Except for reports that the letter was lodged with the South African Embassy in London, its whereabouts remains a mystery whose authorship deepens in light of the fact that South Africa has an embassy in New Delhi, India, where Cde Mutasa claimed to be when he claimed to have written the letter.
Cde Mutasa, who was fired as Presidential Affairs Minister for working with former Vice President Dr Joice Mujuru’s putschist cabal that sought to depose President Mugabe, has been threatening to challenge Zanu-PF constitutional amendments and the outcome of the watershed 6th National People’s Congress in court, claiming it was a legal nullity.
Highly-placed sources yesterday revealed that the embattled Cde Mutasa abandoned his Zanu-PF Headquarters office when he lost his bid to have a Central Committee seat in Makoni District, but looted all essential party documents from the office he was using in the President’s Department where he had been generating, receiving and filing party correspondence over the years.
Lawyers yesterday said Cde Mutasa committed a theft case and would be arrested if Zanu-PF reported the matter to the police.
Said a source close to developments; “He took all the documents from the party. He used the party papers for the frivolous and vexatious litigation.”
Zanu-PF has since advised Cde Mutasa to return the documents, failing which a theft charge will be filed with the police.
“When he was defeated in Makoni for the Central Committee seat, he went to the party headquarters where he was not operating from since he was now using the Government offices at Chaminuka Building. He said he was handing over the office to those to come after him, but he did not hand over the stuff, he took it to the Chaminuka offices.
“Cde Mutasa has been generating, receiving and filing correspondence on party matters from the office he was using at the President’s Department at Chaminuka Building. He had a secretary identified as Mrs Sabina Chiteme, who is also believed to be one of his wives,” said the source.
Zanu-PF director of administration Cde Dickson Dzora, yesterday confirmed the party was handling Cde Mutasa’s theft of documents issue, but declined to disclose more detail.
“I will comment on the matter at the appropriate time. I do not want to jeopardize our investigations,” said Cde Dzora.
However, highly placed party sources disclosed to the Herald yesterday that Zanu PF was determined to retrieve the documents stolen by Cde Mutasa amid fears he might be tampering with them to abet his case that legal experts said was thin on the law but thick on political allegations.
“There are documents he has been receiving, we want them. We also want to see the documents that he has been generating after leaving office. He is guilty of theft of party documents and a demand has been made that he return the documents, failure of which a police report will be made,” said the Zanu-PF official.
Prominent city lawyer, Mr Jonathan Samukange, yesterday said the law was clear that taking away some important company documents when leaving the office was a criminal offense.
“The law is very clear. Taking with you company property including documents after your term office is a criminal offence. He stole those documents. He intended to deprive the owner of the documents. Zanu-PF can report him to the police,” said Mr Samukange.
Said another lawyer who declined to be named; “He stole the party’s property; he must return it or risk arrest.”
To prove that Cde Mutasa had been stealing party documents, his lawyers Gula Ndebele and Partners on January 19 this year wrote to him requesting documents to prepare an application (D. Mutasa and others V Zanu-PF).
“I make re reference to the discussion we had this afternoon and wish to state the documentation we need to found our case as below;”-
“1.The facts in sequence and the dates when the events alleged happened. We shall then reduce to supporting or founding affidavits depending on their content.
2.The organs of the party from the lowest level, their hierarchy and functions.
3.The procedure for holding elections at the various levels from the highest to the lowest.
4.A detailed narrative of how these were done this time round at all the relevant levels. This relates with paragraph one above.
5.Events surrounding elections within the party from the low level to the highest level. This ties in with 1 and 4 above.
6.The new constitution, and the old constitution, which we have.
7.Resolutions of the Central committee, the politburo and congress, leading up to the congress of 2014.
8.Resolutions of the congress before last.
9.Any and all supporting documentation to support the factual issues we will raise in court.
10.Any decisions, deliberations and resolutions of an ad hoc committee set up to deal with pre-congress events, and minutes appointing such ad hoc committee.”
Observers say the fact that Cde Mutasa stole these documents last year meant that his court case had been pre-meditated and that he had been criminally-minded all along.
Sources close to developments said the authorities were now treating Cde Mutasa as a suspect in all break-in cases at the Zanu-PF and government offices were various documents were stolen.
In early September last year, thieves broke into the chamber of Chief Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku at the Supreme Court and stole a desk top computer and a television set.
A few days after the break in, four judges reportedly lost keys to their offices.
Vice President and Minister of Justice and Legal Affairs Cde Emmerson Mnangagwa’s offices at the Zanu-PF headquarters were also broken into in September, while there was an attempted break in at Minister of Transport and Infrastructure Development Cde Obert Mpofu at his Kaguvi Building office this year.