The state has approached the Supreme court challenging the acquittal of businessman and ex-convict, Wicknell Chivhayo in a US$5.6 million fraud case.
The case emanates from the Gwanda solar project which Chivhayo and his company were contracted to install in 2015 but failed or neglected. He was arrested for defrauding the state, but, High Court judge Owen Tagu acquitted him of the charges on March 20 last year.
Energy Minister, advocate Fortune Chasi, vowed upon his appointment that Chivhayo had to pay the “US$5 million … we can’t trivialise …”.
Meanwhile, Chivhayo, through his lawyers has contended that the State’s appeal at the Supreme Court is ultra vires the law, therefore, should not be considered. He said:
The applicants seek the rectification of the record of appeal by the inclusion of documents that the learned (High Court) judge had regard to by reference to related matters. It is important that such documents be part of the record.
However, High Court judge, Esther Charehwa, through Court registrar, suggested that documents Chivayo was referring to were in the public domain already thereby giving the Supreme Court or any other court entitlement to make reference to.
Chivhayo is yet to respond to Charewa.
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