Zanu PF councillor facing various cases involving land 

Source: Zanu PF councillor facing various cases involving land –Newsday Zimbabwe

Zivanai told the court that Chipunza has other cases at the Chitungwiza Magistrates Court  involving the same farm, hence he was likely to commit cases of similar nature.

ZANU PF councillor for ward 11 in Seke, Patson Chipunza, has applied for bail after he was remanded in custody last week on allegations of fraudulently subdividing and selling land belonging to the late former Mines and Mining Development minister Amos Midzi’s estate.

Chipunza, who is being represented by Rene Kuchidza, appeared before Harare provincial magistrate Dennis Mangosi yesterday.

Investigating officer Kingston Zivanai testified for the State in opposing bail saying Chipunza has another case in Beatrice which is under investigation.

Zivanai told the court that Chipunza has other cases at the Chitungwiza Magistrates Court  involving the same farm, hence he was likely to commit cases of similar nature.

He also told the court that Chipunza’s current case was different from another one allegedly committed in 2021 involving subdivision two.

The officer further testified that the Lands ministry understands the land disputes better since they have been ongoing.

Zivanai said Chipunza had ignored calls to visit the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission indicating that he could abscond trial.

However, Kuchidza argued that if Chipunza was never convicted of fraud, there was no evidence that he could commit a similar offence.

He said police at some point tried to evict Chipunza from that farm until the High Court made  an order in 2021.

He further argued that the High Court allowed Chipunza to return to subdivision two of Earling Farm.

He also submitted that Chipunza was a Zanu PF councillor, adding that considering his position he had no reason to abscond since he has national duty.

Kuchidza also told the court that Chipunza could not interfere with State witnesses since it was the complainant as the purchaser and Chipunza as the seller hence chances of interference were very limited.

Prosecutor Rufaro Chonzi alleged that in December 2002, the Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development ministry allocated Subdivision 1 of Earling Farm in Beatrice, measuring 347 50 hectares to Midzi.

When Midzi died, the farm was never reallocated to anyone hence it is part of his estate.

In December 2022, Chipunza fraudulently subdivided the farm and engaged an agent, Templeton Chadyiwa, to advertise the sale of the subdivided land.

In January 2023, Phillip Chapfunga, who is a land developer, saw an advert and approached the agent.

Chapfunga was referred to Chipunza, who allegedly masqueraded as the village head and owner of the land.

Acting on the misrepresentation, Chapfunga acquired a piece of land measuring 63 hectares for US$29 000 and made additional investment of US$41 000 in farm infrastructure.

The fraud was discovered by a co-executor of the estate, Chido Makazhu, who reported the matter to the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc), leading to Chipunza’s arrest.

Chipunza (39) was remanded in custody to today for bail ruling.

COMMENTS

WORDPRESS: 0