Former Mutare City Council Assistant Housing Director Lovemore Chitima, up on allegations of criminal abuse of office for allegedly selling residential stands in the city at inflated priced and pocketing the difference appeared at the Mutare magistrates court Wednesday and remanded to 13 July 2011.
Chitima, 40, who resides in Dangamvura’s Area 13 in Mutare, appeared before regional magistrate Billiard Musakwa accused of selling nine residential stands to nine individuals at high prices without the permission of his employer.
The court heard that through Chitima’s alleged criminal activities the
Mutare city council was prejudiced of $6 595.
Chitima who is being represented in court by Ashel Mutungura of Mutungura and Associates is denying the charge.
The state led by Simon Chabuka is alleging that between 16 January 2009 and 17 February 2010, Chitima sold the nine stands to one T.M Munengwa, T. Mabhurukwa, F.Magombedze, D. Magurameno, C Mashazhu, G.Karimanzira, J Mhuriyengwe and one B. Manyere at inflated the prices and allegedly concerted the difference to his personal use.
Chabuka told the court that Chitima, whose duties included supervising, checking of all records of repossessed stands, allocation of stands in conjunction with the director of housing and community services abused his office when he sold the nine stands at costs not prescribed by the council.
He said the accused was supposed to have sold the stands for values pegged by the council but sold the stands at high prices, adding that Chitima by intentionally pocketing the difference from the sale of the stands was acting contrary and inconsistent with his duties as a public officer.
Chitima, who was fired from Mutare City Council in April last year after an internal investigating team and disciplinary team found him guilty for the said offence and took up the matter with the police. The ex-assistant housing director is appearing in court on summons and will be back in court next Wednesday.