Choppies chief executive officer Mr Ramachandran Ottapathu has withdrawn fraud and extortion charges levelled against former Vice-President Phelekezela Mphoko’s son, Siqokoqela and his wife Nomagugu.
The Mphoko’s were accused of “looting” more than $80 000 worth of cash and goods. Siqokoqela, who was a shareholder in the retail business and a non-executive director, was alleged to have abused his power to “loot” $50 000 in cash realised from sales at different supermarkets and replacing it with transfers. Nomagugu allegedly went to various Choppies outlets in Bulawayo demanding cash. She allegedly ordered 15 Choppies Supermarket managers in Bulawayo to unlawfully dispense more than $30 000 cash from their POS machines after threatening them with either deportation or dismissal. Ramadandran said Choppies no longer wish to pursue their criminal complaint. Said Gutu:
I represent all the complainants in the matter of State versus Nomagugu Mphoko under CRB Byo 2431/18 and Siqokoqela Mphoko under CRB Byo 2567/18. After some representation and discussions between the complainants and accused persons, the complainants no longer wish to pursue their criminal complaints against the accused persons, and as such, a resolution to withdraw the pending criminal charges has been made. I confirm that this resolution has been made with full appreciation of the consequences thereof and there has not been any undue influence on the complainants