Fungai Lupande Court Reporter
Zimbabwe People First party lawyer, Gift Nyandoro yesterday appeared in court accused of conniving with a Harare woman to sell a non-existent residential stand to two desperate home seekers.Nyandoro and Pauline Gutsa appeared before Harare magistrate Ms Sharon Rakafa facing fraud charges.Nyandoro’s lawyer Mr Eddie Hamunakwadi applied for stay of proceedings pending a determination on his application for review at the High Court.
“There is no prejudice in this court granting the application for stay of proceedings. In the event that the High Court dismisses the application, trial can proceed,” said Mr Hamunakwadi.“Assuming that there is prejudice, the court can separate trial.”
The prosecutor Ms Tariro Gwatidzo said she was not aware of any application for review of proceedings.“This is my first time to hear about it. There is no order to stay proceedings by the High Court thereby trial should proceed,” said Ms Gwatidzo.Mr Hamunakwadi insisted that the application was served to State in May this year.
“State is not taking proceedings seriously and we take serious reservations,” he said.Gutsa’s lawyer was not available.Ms Rakafa postponed the matter to October 24 for State’s response and November 4 for her ruling.Ms Gwatidzo alleged that in August 2014, Paddington Ruhora was looking for a residential stand.
His friend only identified as Freddy referred him to Nyandoro and GutsaIt is alleged Ruhora approached the pair to get finer details and they explained to him.Ruhora was interested in buying the stand and the pair convinced him that his money would be safely kept by the lawyer, Nyandoro.
It is alleged Ruhora believed the residential stand was genuine and gave Nyandoro $4 000 as part payment for the stand.Using the same modus operandi Gutsa and Nyandoro convinced another home seeker, Lewis Bangomwe to pay for the same stand.On August 29, 2014 Bangomwe paid $300 administration fee and another $1 000 on December 24.
It is alleged he paid another $2 000 on January 5.The court heard that Ruhora and Bangomwe were separately allocated stand No. 11024 Glen Norah A in December 2014 and promised that development for the stands was in progress.It is alleged no development took place and when Ruhora visited the stand in March last year, another person was occupying the stand.
Ruhora inquired with Gutsa who professed ignorance.The court heard that Ruhora verified with City of Harare and was advised that the stand was non-existent.Bangomwe lost $7 300 while Ruhora lost $4 000 and nothing was recovered.