via Mangoma trial commences – NewsDay Zimbabwe September 21, 2015
THE trial of former Energy and Power Development minister Elton Mangoma on charges of abuse of public office by giving a the Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company (ZETDC) electronic voucher resale tender to OK Supermarkets without going to tender opens at the Harare Magistrates’ Courts today.
by PAIDAMOYO MUZULU
Mangoma, who is pleading not guilty to the charges, is represented by Harare lawyer Beatrice Mtetwa.
The State has been dragging its feet in coming up with a trial date for Mangoma since his arrest in May this year after initially indicating that it only needed a month to complete investigations.
This prompted Mtetwa last month to apply for refusal of further remand if the State failed to furnish her client with a trial date.
It is the State’s case that Mangoma, during his tenure as a Cabinet minister, ordered a ZETDC managing director to cancel a tender for the sale of pre-paid electricity tokens and in turn, have it given to OK Zimbabwe, one of the country’s leading retailers.
The State in its papers furnished to Mangoma’s lawyers last Monday indicated that it would call eight witnesses to testify during the trial. The witnesses are from the ministry and Zesa.
Mangoma, who now leads the opposition Renewal Democrats of Zimbabwe, confirmed that he was ready for trial.
“Despite our receiving the State papers late, we are ready to go to trial and clear my name,” he said.
Mangoma has faced similar charges in the past, but was freed by the courts.
He was arrested twice during the life of the inclusive government between 2009 and 2013.