Tomana trial in false start, again

THE trial of suspended Prosecutor-General (PG) Johannes Tomana, who is being charged with criminal abuse of office, did not commence again yesterday after the State failed to furnish the defence with court papers.

BY MARY TARUVINGA

Prosecutor-General Johannes Tomana Tomana’s lawyer, Tazorora Musarurwa, told the court the defence got the State papers late and as such had not had enough time to prepare for trial.

The matter was postponed to October 4 with the State’s consent.

When the trial eventually starts, the former PG will be answering to six counts of abuse of office after allegations of illegally removing Gushungo Dairy bombing suspects from remand were combined with fresh charges.

However, Musarurwa notified the court that he would apply for stay of proceedings on the next court date if the State would not be ready for the trial.

The State is being represented by Timothy Makoni and Gwinyai Shumba.

Tomana landed himself in trouble early this year after withdrawing charges before plea against two soldiers, Silas Pfupa and Solomon Makumbe, who were accused of trying to bomb the First Family’s business in Mazowe.

The two soldiers were turned into State witnesses.

Tomana is also accused of dropping charges against Bright Matonga, Charles Nherera, Beauty Basile and Patrick Mavros.

According to the State, Matonga, a former Zupco chief executive officer, was facing culpable homicide charges after fatally knocking down one Chipo Chikowore in 2006.

In another count, Tomana is accused of declaring that former Zupco board chairperson Nherera had been wrongly convicted and sentenced to three years’ imprisonment for corruption and went on to cause the setting-aside of his conviction and sentence.

Meanwhile, the trial of Viva Zimbabwe founder William Gerald Mutumanje, commonly known as Acie Lumumba, who is accused of undermining President Robert Mugabe’s authority, was postponed to September 20, as the Harare Magistrates’ Court was still awaiting a determination on an urgent chamber application filed at the High Court.

Through his lawyers, Lumumba directly approached the Constitutional Court after Harare provincial magistrate Vakai Chikwekwe dismissed his application for referral of the case, saying he should have his day in court.
Both Tomana and Lumumba appeared before Chikwekwe. – NewsDay

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