Muchechetere drags Mugabe, AG to court

via Muchechetere drags Mugabe, AG to court – NewsDay Zimbabwe March 28, 2015 by Charles Laiton

SUSPENDED Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) group chief executive officer Happison Muchechetere, whose trial, over allegations of contravening procurement regulations, was stalled pending a Constitutional application, has now dragged President Robert Mugabe and the Attorney-General (AG) advocate Prince Machaya to the Constitutional Court.

In his affidavit filed on Friday last week, Muchechetere made an application for the joinder of Mugabe and Machaya on the basis of the duo being the custodian of the Procurement Act and Regulations, whose provisions he has sought to be expunged by the ConCourt.

“The first respondent is the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe [Robert Mugabe] in his official capacity, whose office is the responsible authority for the administration of the Procurement Act and subsidiary legislation thereunder in terms of the Statutory Instrument 19/14,” Muchechetere said.

“The third respQondent is the Attorney-General [Machaya] cited herein in his official capacity as the principal legal advisor to the government. Third respondent also participates in the drafting of legislation on behalf of the government.”

Through his lawyer advocate Thabani Mpofu Muchechetere argues that the charges he was facing in the Magistrates’ Court did not exist at law.

“The charge applicant faces aquo alleges that the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation is a procuring entity and that the accused person is its accounting officer. That allegation is heretical as a matter of law as the corporation does not, as a matter of law, exist,” Mpofu said.

“It’s disbanding was achieved in 2002 by the enactment of the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation Act, which created two private limited companies. What exist therefore are companies limited by shares which are registered as private limited companies.

“The (Pvt) Ltd company which exist and which employs the accused person is not listed in the second schedule to the Procurement Regulations and is by law not a procurement entity. It is not required to go to tender.”

Allegations against Muchechetere are that on January 18 2013, he entered into a procurement agreement for an Audio Outside Broadcasting Van valued at $1 050 000 with the China National Instruments Imports and Exports Corporation without going to tender. On June 28 2013, it is alleged, Muchechetere single-handedly concluded the purchase deal, after which he was issued with a commercial invoice of $1 050 000. The van was subsequently delivered on August 8 2013.