Friday 28 April 2023


ZANU PF’s disqualified candidate for Chipinge South — Robert Nyemudzo — had his application for discharge dismissed on Wednesday, with the court ruling that he has a case to answer.

To arrive at its decision, the court cited incriminating evidence adduced by State witness.

Nyemudzo, who was disqualified from representing the ruling party in the upcoming harmonised elections, initially appeared in court on Monday facing charges of contravening the Harmful Liquids Act (Chapter 9:10).

He is being accused of brewing illicit beer and drug peddling at Checheche Growth Point.

Nyemudzo was represented by Mr Simon Simango of Nyikadzino and Simango Associates, and denied the allegations.

Mr Simango then applied for discharge arguing that the State had failed to prove a prima facie case against his client.

“Your Worship, the State witnesses were spot on when they distanced Nyemudzo from the commission of the offence during cross examination. The police went to his house, which was under construction, and found some people brewing beer but they did not arrest them.

“They told the court that they were ordered by their superiors not arrest them.

The other witness, a laboratory scientist, said the samples were tempered with.

They laboratory scientists testified that the seal on the samples were tempered with. I therefore call for this honourable court to discharge my client,” said Mr Simango.

However, on Wednesday, the presiding magistrate, Mr Franklin Mkwananzi dismissed the application saying the State had proved its case beyond any reasonable doubt.

The matter was remanded to May 3 for judgement.

“There is some evidence produced in court that the defence has to come clean on. The quantities recovered formulates a reasonable suspicion that the accused could be indeed running a massive production of illicit beer at his home.

“A police witness also said they found close to 15 people brewing beer at this house. These people might be the accused’s employees. The application for discharge is therefore dismissed,” ruled Mr Mkwananzi.

One of the defence witnesses, Kelvin Njanji who testified on Wednesday exonerated Nyemudzo of any wrongdoing.

“When the crime was committed, I was the on-site builder, and I recall on October 29, 2020 when a well-known business person at Checheche Growth Point approached me saying he wanted to use the construction site to brew his beer without Nyemudzo’s knowledge.

“I was promised R500 for the use of the premises. The business person then brought buckets full of ethanol after which his employees started brewing beer.

“However, on the day in question, the police came and arrested them. The police were told that the illicit beer belonged to that business person. They phoned the business person and the people who were brewing the illicit beer were released.

“Nyemudzo did not even know what had transpired. He was not even part of it,’ said Njanji.

Prosecutor, Mr Tulani Zondwayo told the court that sometime in October 2020, the police in Chisumbanje executed an operation code-named ‘No to illicit beer at Checheche Growth Point’.

“During the operation, the police received a tip off that Nyemudzo was brewing beer at his Stand Number 708, Phase 2, Checheche.

“They besieged the place and found 15 people brewing illicit beer. It was being packaged in 200mls plastic containers,” he said.

The police confiscated 20 860x200mls of illicit beer; 2380x200mls empty plastic bottles and 6×20 litre buckets of ethanol from Nyemudzo’s premises; which could all be produced in court as exhibits.

Sitting legislator, Cde Enock Porusingazi, has been endorsed as the Zanu PF candidate for Chipinge South. Manica Post


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