BY DESMOND CHINGARANDE
FORMER chief magistrate Mishrod Guvamombe has been acquitted of criminal abuse of office allegations in a case where he was being accused of giving former ministers Saviour Kasukuwere and Supa Mandiwanzira internship at the Harare Magistrates Court illegally.
Kasukuwere and Mandiwanzira were allegedly offered internship at the magistrates’ court at a time when they were both facing abuse of office allegations before the same court.
High Court judge Justice Felistas Chatukuta on Tuesday cleared Guvamombe of any wrongdoing regarding the enrolment of the two former ministers.
Guvamombe had filed an application for discharge at the close of the State case.
State witnesses, who included Judiciary Service Commission (JSC) secretary Walter Chikwanha, and commissioners Elisha Singano and Sithembinkosi Msipa, exonerated Guvamombe during trial.
The court heard that there was no set protocol regarding enrolment of attachees at JSC, which was also admitted by the State.
Guvamombe’s application for discharge was, however, dismissed with respect to other charges, where he is accused of interfering in a case where his friend’s son, Nathan Mnaba, was involved.
He is alleged to have forced magistrate Elijah Makomo, to recuse himself in the matter.
The trial will proceed on Friday in respect to that charge.
In her ruling yesterday, Justice Chatukuta said the State proved its prima facie case against the former chief magistrate.
The State alleges that this resulted in Mnaba being acquitted by Makomo, who was allegedly handpicked to preside over the case by Guvamombe.
Guvamombe was suspended in 2019.