HARARE – Harare regional magistrate Hosea Mujaya has acquitted Emmanuel Chimwanda, the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc) commissioner, who was accused of contravening the Official Secrets Act.
Mujaya yesterday cleared Chimwanda of any wrong-doing.
He was accused of supplying dockets and information to four MDC officials — Thabani Mpofu, Warship Dumba, Felix Matsinde and Mehluli Tshuma — who have since appeared in court facing charges of impersonating the police, possessing articles for criminal use and breaching the Official Secrets Act.
“I must find you not guilty and acquitted in all five counts,” Mujaya said.
Chimwanda, who was represented by Jonathan Samukange, had denied the allegations, arguing that the claims were “malicious, vindictive and baseless”.
Samukange said his client had not contravened the Official Secrets Act, since the clause only applies to issues to do with national security.
“Sometimes when societies are getting corrupt, there is a tendency of prosecuting those trying to do the right thing. If you convict him (Chimwanda), you are trying to perpetuate this corruption,” Samukange said in his closing submissions.
Prosecutor Michael Reza had insisted Chimwanda was guilty.
Chimwanda is further accused of providing the four MDC officials with information pertaining to on-going investigations about local government minister Ignatius Chombo’s abuse of office allegations.
Reza had told the court that Chimwanda also connived with the four officials and compiled a summary of offences against Prosecutor-General Johannes Tomana.
The court heard that in April last year, the commission was investigating a fraud case involving former Harare special interest councillor Charles Nyachowe.
According to state papers, Chimwanda requested the docket and provided the information to Mpofu, Dumba, Matsinde and Tshuma.
Dumba, a former councillor gave evidence defending Chimwanda.
He said Chombo was “vindictive” and did not want people poking their noses into his “shady deals”.
He said the minister should be investigated as there was documentary evidence on his deals.