$18m stands scam lands 3 in soup 

Source: $18m stands scam lands 3 in soup – NewsDay Zimbabwe


THREE Mvurwi Town Council officials were recently arrested after they allegedly sold 32 stands valued at more than $18 million to desperate home-seekers and issued them with fake receipts.

Town secretary Sheri Nyakudya (57), housing and community services officer Letwin Watambwa (55) and housing clerk Simbarashe Kambare (45) appeared before Guruve magistrate Geraldine Mutsotso at the weekend facing fraud charges.

The other accused, Sydney Chihombe (37), who is still at large, is reportedly nephew to Nyakudya.

Yesterday, the accused appeared before the same magistrate, who denied them bail and remanded them to March 29 for trial at the Bindura regional court.

Prosecutor Albert Charewa alleged that on October 3, 2018, Mvurwi Town Council held a full council meeting and resolved to suspend the selling of stands.

Between October 10, 2018 and June 2020, the four allegedly hatched a plan to defraud the council.

The court heard that they looked for desperate stands seekers in Mvurwi and misrepresented to 32 of them that they were selling their residential stands.

Chihombe allegedly generated fake receipts for the stand seekers.

Watambwa recommended approval of lease of the land by endorsing her signature, while Nyakudya approved the lease documents.

An internal audit was carried out on December 3, 2020 and it exposed that council was prejudiced of $18 795 956.