Prosecutor Mr Brian Vito this Tuesday failed to appear for the fraud case of Wicknell Chivayo, of Intratrek and former Zimbabwe Power Company chairman, Stanley Kazhanje.
Mr Vito reportedly had a breakdown in Bulawayo prompting Magistrate Mr Trynos Utahwashe to roll the matter to tomorrow when Mr Vito is expected to have returned from Bulawayo.
Ms Farirai Undenge appeared for the State while advocate Lewis Uriri appeared for Chivayo and his company and also stood in for advocate Sylvester Hashiti who is representing Kazhanje.
Chivayo and Kazhanje’s trial comes after the Supreme Court reversed Chivayo acquittal by the High Court on fraud involving US$5.6 million emanating from the Zimbabwe Power Company’s Gwanda solar project.
Chivayo’s Intratek Zimbabwe was in 2015 awarded a tender and paid US$5 million by the Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC) for pre-commencement work at the 100-megawatt Gwanda solar power plant which is yet to take off.
It is alleged that the “briefcase company” did not deserve the tender but Kazhanje accepted a bribe to influence the tender process in the favour of Chivayo who also had ties with the then first family – the Mugabe family.
This is happening when Zimbabwe has a huge power deficit that has seen the local power utility, ZESA Holdings, importing electricity from neighbouring South Africa and Mozambique to complement local power plants including Kariba and Hwange.
At the summit of the country’s power crisis, some regions in the country would go for about 18 hours daily without electricity.
The power crisis has adversely affected production and economic growth in the country.
More: The Herald