Crime & Courts

Reza reported to ZACC over criminal abuse of office storm

By Court Reporter

Former Harare City Council (HCC) chief building inspector has reported acting deputy prosecutor general Michael Reza over unlawfully facilitating his arrest in a complaint filed with the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) in a new twist to a court battle involving two Harare businessmen.

Roy Nyabvure is accusing Reza of misrepresenting facts leading to his arrest in November last year on accusations of abuse of office that arose from a dispute between property developer Georgios Katsimberis and controversial land baron Ken Sharpe.

Nyabvure a 64 year old Vetaran of the armed struggle was arrested at the Harare magistrate court in year soon after testifying in a case against Sharpe and his company that is being handled by the Special-Anti Corruption Unit (SACU) prosecutors based in President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s office.

Nyabvure was arrested after Reza wrote a letter which he stamped and copied himself to the police informing them that the former council employee had finished testifying in a separate case, which was not true.

In a letter to ZACC, Nyabvure said Reza’s actions were deliberately misleading and were materially false meant to silence him.

“On or about the 14th of October 2022 and in a letter to the Zimbabwe Republic Police, during the course of or for the purpose of judicial proceedings the accused person, knowing that the Zimbabwe Republic Police were investigating a possible offence, through a statement made otherwise than upon oath made a false declaration and stated the following,” read part of Nyabvure’s letter.

In response to the letter the police wrote to the NPA inquiring if Nyabvure was still a witness and Reza responded by saying the former council employee had concluded testifying “in the perjury trial against Michael van Blerk and Pokugara Properties (Pvt) Ltd.”

Nyabvure said Reza had no lawful right to act in the manner that he did and evidence can be led from prosecution witnesses.

“The accused made this statement well knowing that, and intending that the Zimbabwe Republic Police be misled into believing that the said Roy Nyabvure was no longer a witness in any proceedings despite the fact that the accused person knew that Mr Roy Nyabvure was a witness in one of four different cases,” the letter added.

Nyabvure is a witness in a matter where Katsimberis is accused of fraudulently doctoring building plans.

However, Katsimberis last week through his lawyer Advocate Tinomudaishe Chinyoka demanded that Reza must recuse himself from his cases after he allegedly misled the police to arrest a key witness in a matter that is still before the courts.

Chinyoka accused Reza of having vested interests and questioned why the deputy prosecutor general was always the prosecutor in all cases that involved Sharpe and his companies as well as associates such as Tatiana Aleshina.

Last month, High Court Judge Justice Pisirayi Kwenda criticised the police’s involvement in Nyabvure’s arrest when he granted him bail.

The judge also hit out at Harare magistrate Taurai Manuwere for denying Nyabure bail saying the court acted in a manner that was prejudicial to the justice system.

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