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    Saturday, 23 July 2016

    Council employees pack Court as Munganasa perjury trial begins


    – Court five was packed on Thursday and Friday when Masvingo City Health Director Zvapano Munganasa appeared before Magistrate Sibongile Mkandla charged with an attempt to defeat the course of justice or alternatively perjury (lying under oath).
    The High Court recently ruled out that Munganasa lied under oath when he tried to save Masvingo Drama Circle property that was to be auctioned by claiming that the said property was council property instead.
    Munganasa's son Charles was the vice-chairman of Masvingo Drama Circle when a High Court order was issued to auction the property.
    Tens of people including senior Council officers and members of Munganasa's family thronged the court.
    The property which included an assortment of things from theatre curtains, lightning systems, historical pictures have since been auctioned after the High Court dismissed council's appeal against the move.
    The court case against Drama Circle was brought by one of its former directors, Leeroy Gono who complained against his dismissal which he says was unfair.
    Munganasa's lawyers Muzenda and Partners applied for the case to be thrown out on Thursday on a technicality in which the State representative Mukai Mutume did not have her papers in order.
    The application was thrown out by Magistrate Mkandla who ruled that Munganasa had a case to answer and trial should start on August 11, 2016.
    The State case is that Gono fought his dismissal from Drama Circle and the Labour Court declared that he either be reinstated or given compensation to the tune of $44 000.
    Drama Circle fought the ruling in the courts but lost resulting in a court order for the auction of the organisation's property.
    When the auction was about to be done, Munganasa who was acting town clerk made an interpleader to the effect that in fact the property that had been attached for auction did not belong to the Drama Circle but it belonged to Masvingo City Council.
    Gono contested the interpleader and gave evidence to the High Court that Munganasa was lying under oath resulting in the court giving the green light for the auction to proceed.
    Gono then reported Munganasa to the Police for perjury resulting in his arrest by the Police in January 25,  2016.
    Munganasa is charged for attempting to defeat the course of justice as defined in section 189 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act Chapter 9:23 A.R.W with section 184 of the same Act. He also faces an alternative charge of perjury as defined in section 183 of the criminal law (Codification and Reform) Act.
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