Daniel Nemukuyu and Panashe Machakaire
Harare businessman Genius “Ginimbi” Kadungure, accused of fraud, tax evasion and money laundering, was yesterday sent to remand prison after being denied bail by a Harare regional magistrate.
Kadungure became the first prominent figure to appear before the court, a few hours after Chief Justice Luke Malaba had read the riot act, fuming over the unjustified granting of bail to suspects in high-profile corruption-related cases.
The prosecution had consented to the granting of bail in the sum of $1 000, but regional magistrate Ms Bianca Makwande ruled that the businessman’s release on bail was not in the interest of justice.
Ms Makwande said Kadungure’s release would undermine public confidence in the criminal justice system.
“I am guided by Section 117 (3) (b) of the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act as well as Section 117 (3) (e) of the same Act,” she said. “The release of the accused will undermine public confidence in the criminal justice system.”
Ms Makwande said the offences fell under the bracket of serious offences cancerous to the society, hence bail could not be granted.
“Therefore, despite the State’s consent, I hereby deny bail,” ruled Ms Makwande.
Kadungure’s lawyer, Mr Jonathan Samukange, said he was preparing an application for review and appeal on an urgent basis at the High Court.
Allegations against Kadungure are that between February 2009 and May 2016, his company Piko Trading (Private) Limited misrepresented to the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority that it made total sales of $2 777 678 inclusive of value added tax, when in actual fact the company had made sales amounting to $9 092 951.
To that end, Zimra suffered a prejudice of $417 940.
He is also being accused of evading tax, with Zimra suffering a total prejudice of $3 468 949.
Kadungure was on Thursday arrested by the police at Harare Magistrates’ Court after appearing before the court in a different case in which he is being accused of duping Chegutu West National Assembly member Cde Dexter Nduna and Ivon and Enos Gatawa of R1 535 000 in a botched pump supply deal.