State Withdraws Criminal Abuse Of Office Charges Against Victoria Falls Clerk

The State has withdrawn before plea, charges of criminal abuse of duty as a public officer against Victoria Falls Town Clerk Mr Ronnie Dube for lack of evidence.

Hwange magistrate Ms Barbara Phiri withdrew charges against Dube on Tuesday after the state prosecutor Ms Kudzai Mudzamiri made a verbal submission for intention to withdraw the charges before plea.

Victoria Falls Mayor Councillor Somveli Dlamini had suspended Dube on April 28 this year accusing him of corruption, gross incompetence, abuse of office and causing the local authority to lose revenue.

He was eventually arrested in May.

A commission of inquiry set by Victoria Falls City Council to investigate allegations levelled against Mr Dube exonerated him saying there was no wrongdoing by the Town Clerk.

The Commission recommended his reinstatement which was done in June.

The commission chaired by former Victoria Falls Mayor Alderman Nkosilathi Jiyane said the charges could have emanated from personal vendettas and lack of trust within the council.

It also recommended that the local authority should improve on its information handling and avoid having anyone speaking for the organisation.

After the withdrawal of the charges, Dube’s defence counsel Mr Matshobana Ncube of Ncube Attorneys wrote to the council advising that the Town Clerk was now a free man.

The letter was read during a full council meeting on Tuesday. Read the letter:

We still act for the above named Mr Ronnie Dube who is our client and is the Town Clerk for the City of Victoria Falls. We write to advise that today at the Hwange Magistrates’ Courts the State dropped charges against our client. Consequently, he has been liberated as there is no pending matter at this moment in time. The net effect of the dropping of charges is that he is a free man with no charge outstanding against him.

Mr Dube had been out of custody on $50 000 since his arrest in May.

Allegations were that Dube (54) caused the council to sell a commercial stand to a local tour operator, Shearwater Adventures in 2019 without following tender procedures.

More: The Chronicle

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