Mliswa To Stay In Prison

Mliswa, who was arrested on Monday and charged with fraud appeared at the Harare magistrates’ court together with two of his co-accused Thursday.

His lawyer Charles Chinyama  vehemently opposed bail saying his client was facing trumped up charges.He claimed the charges were being created by “some people” who wanted to fix Mliswa – a controversial  former fitness trainer.

The magistrate granted Mliswa and his colleagues a US$400 bail and ordered them to report to the police once a week.

But soon after bail was granted, the state through prosecutor Phyllis Zvenyika, invoked the controversial Section 121, which has been mainly used in the past to persecute Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) officials, human rights defenders and Zanu (PF) people who would have opposed the system.

Mliswa’s troubles could have worsened through his weekend outbursts when he attacked police commissioner Augustine Chihuri describing him as the most corrupt police officer.

The state accuses Mliswa of fraudulently acquiring 50 percent stake in vehicles repair company Noshio Motors from one Hammerskjold Banda who was in partnership with businessman Paul Westwood.

Westwood, believed to be a close associate of Chihuri, is now  arguing that Mliswa’s acquisition of the majority shares from Banda was fraudulently done and reported the matter to the police leading to Mliswa’s arrest.

But Mliswa believed that it was Chihuri who wanted to fix him because he was corruptly benefitting from Westwood and for calling him a corrupt commissioner in the media.

Mliswa’s lawyer argued in court that they were shocked with the allegations given the case was more of a civil case than criminal. The lawyer told the court that the nature of the case suggested that the issue was being pushed by “someone from the top” and the Mliswa camp said it was Chihuri.