Chemhondoro Primary School headmaster, Douglas Matonzi (55) who pleaded not guilty to conniving with school bursar Tendai Zambezi (29), to burn the administration offices in a bid to destroy evidence following a visit by auditors, was been sentenced to five years in jail by Murewa magistrate Chiedza Gadzi, who found him guilty of malicious damage to property. He will serve an effective four and a half years after six months were suspended on condition of good behaviour.
The court heard that a team of government internal auditors visited the school and carried out an audit of financial books and records on January 9 at around 2pm. The auditors asked the bursar to issue an instruction to all the pupils at the school to bring all their receipts the following day. He was also asked to provide bank statements dating back to 2009.
At around 7:45pm, a fire broke out in the headmaster’s office, and school staff, including the accused, and some villagers rushed to the scene and put out the blaze with sand and water. Investigating police officers then discovered a purple petrol container near the scene. Upon being questioned, Zambezi admitted to the offence and implicated Matonzi.