Energy and Power Development Minister Samuel Undenge has been revealed to have lied that Fruitful Communications Private Limited was doing Public Relations (PR) Consultancy work for ZESA for free. This came out when Fruitful Communications filed a $36 000 lawsuit against ZESA at the High Court. Fruitful Communications is owned by Zanu-PF Highfield MP Psychology Maziwisa and Oscar Pambuka.
Minister Undenge directed ZESA to engage the services of Fruitful Communications, despite the fact that ZESA had its own PR department. When questioned about this anomaly by the Herald last year, Undenge said Fruitful Communications were not being paid anything. He said
They are people in public relations and there is no formal contract with anyone and if anyone wants to help for free, we allow them to do that.
They felt they wanted to explain something to the public. It is just like you, you write a lot of things, but we do not pay you.
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Lawyers for ZESA have asked for further details from Fruitful Communications after saying:
Was the engagement reduced in writing or oral? If written, a copy thereof is requested. If it was oral, who acted for the defendant (ZPC)? What were the full terms of the agreement?
The case is ongoing.