ZPC buyer in $143k swindle

A HWANGE-BASED Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC) employee appeared in court for allegedly defrauding his employer of $143 000 which he used to buy gas for resale on the black market.


Taonga Chikwereti of 125B Ingagula was not asked to plead when he appeared before Hwange magistrate Gift Dube, facing 307 counts of fraud.

He was granted $400 bail and ordered to report once a fortnight at CID Fraud Unit in Hwange, not to interfere with witnesses, reside at his given address as well as surrender travel documents to the clerk of court.

Prosecutor Sithandweyinkosi Sithole told the court that between January 2014 and November 2017, Chikwereti was responsible for procuring goods for ZPC under its stores department. He raised several delivery notes purporting that ZPC had ordered gas.

In December last year, BOC Gases suspended the ZPC account due to non-payment, which prompted the power utility to make reconciliations, leading to the discovery of the offence.

Chikwereti allegedly bought different kinds and quantities of gas from BOC Gases Hwange using the ZPC account and the company paid a total of $143 831,57 between January 2014 and November last year and the gas was never delivered to the company.

Chikwereti would allegedly destroy the master copies from receipt books to cover up his tracks in connivance with unnamed accomplices from BOC Gases and would sell the gas on the parallel market.

The gases included acetylene, argon, carbon dioxide, oxygen, nitrogen and propane which are the major consumables used by ZPC to heat metals.

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