Mashonaland West Bureau
POLICE officer commanding Mashonaland West province, Commissioner Coneli Dube, who was arrested by the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Unit (ZACC) on allegations of obstructing the course of justice, spent last night in custody and is expected in court today for bail ruling.
Dube appeared before Mashonaland West provincial magistrate, Ms Ruth Moyo for initial remand.
He is accused of trying to protect four Criminal Investigation Department (CID) officers, Detective Assistant Inspector Moses Million, Detective Assistant Inspector Newton Musende, Detective Sergeant Never Muchekawaya and Detective Constable Justice Mapfanya who are facing charges of extorting money from one Washington Ongorani.
Dube allegedly withheld the criminal docket for the four ,thereby contravening Section 184 (1)(a) of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act chapter 9:23.
Prosecuting, Ms Teveraishe Zinyemba told the court that Dube committed the offence on February 13 this year, when he allegedly withheld the docket under ZRP Chinhoyi Central CR 48/02/21.
The docket had been prepared by Chief Inspector Elymas Silivani who went with it to court under prosecutor reference number A225/21.
The court further heard that on March 12, 2021, a public prosecutor, Ms Gutu, returned the docket to the police station with instructions for the investigating officer to return the docket on March 19, 2021.
The accused, the court heard, instructed one Superintendent Ruwanda to bring the docket to his office before ordering him to ignore the instruction of the public prosecutor.
Dube is also said to have ordered Superintendent Ruwanda to lock away the docket in the district office’s safe until further instructions.
The then Officer Commanding Makonde District, Chief Superintendent Elliot Magomo, the court further heard, approached the accused to inquire why dockets were being kept under lock and the accused is alleged to have claimed that it was a directive from a higher office.
On May 13, Chief Superintendent Magomo wrote to Dube advising him of a complaint from Ongorani who queried why his case was taking long but Dube took no action.
The State opposed the bail application on the basis that the accused was a flight risk who was also likely to abscond and interfere with witnesses.
ZACC’s senior investigations officer, Mr Patrick Madiye said if granted bail, the accused could influence or intimidate some of the witnesses who were his subordinates.
Mr Madiye also told the court that the accused had influenced the transfer of two senior officers from the province.
In his bail application, Dube had averred that he was not a flight risk as he was willing to surrender his travel documents.
He said he was not familiar with the witnesses hence he would not interfere with them.