Telecel Zimbabwe Seeking Private Prosecution

The company has written to the Attorney General seeking a certificate that it declined to prosecute in the fraud case. If the AG writes the certificate, Telecel will proceed with a private prosecution.

Mutasa was arrested last month together with her personal assistant Caroline Gwinyai, Telecel’s regional sales manager Charles Mapurisa and commercial director Naquib Omar for defrauding the company of USd 750 000 in an airtime scam.

Last week chief law officer Chris Mutangadura declined to prosecute the matter at the instance of the state.

“On 1st April, 2010 at Rotten Row Magistrates’ Court chief law officer Chris Mutangadura declined to prosecute the accused persons at the public instance. Our client strongly believes that the evidence gathered by the police against the accused persons is overwhelming,” Telecel’s lawyer, George Mamvura of Scanlen and Holderness, wrote.

“It has requested us to request you to issue a certificate in terms section 16 of the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act (Chapter 9:07) that you decline to prosecute the accused persons. Our client intends to conduct a private prosecution.”

It is the state’s case that Mutasa connived with former Telecel commercial director, Naquib Omar to acquire stocks from Telecel Zimbabwe using her company, Oxygon Investments.

They used stolen manual invoice books with serial numbers 3251-3300, which were kept by Mapurisa.

This was against a company directive issued on July 15 last year that Telecel staffers should stop selling starter packs and recharge cards against manual invoices.

Between August 26 and October 21 2009, Mutasa is alleged to have instructed Omar to request stock from Telecel stores on behalf of her personal firm Oxygon Investments..

The matter came to light when Telecel’s finance manager was preparing end-of-month financial statements in September 2009.

Telecel engaged auditors who managed to quantify the variance to US$1.7 million of which US$750 000 was traced to seed packs and airtime recharge cards purportedly sold to Oxygon Investments.