JUST IN: Ex-minister who was released from prison due to ill health gets arrested again, fresh charges emerge


AILING former Midlands Provincial Affairs minister Jason Machaya was Thursday released from prison on health grounds only to be promptly re-arrested on separate charges.

Machaya spent the Christmas and New Year holidays in jail after he was arrested two weeks ago on abuse of office charges involving the claimed acquisition of residential stands in Gokwe.

His family and lawyers then argued he was seriously ill while detained at WhaWha prison, resulting in authorities releasing him.

However, sources in Gweru said he was promptly re-arrested over another abuse of office charge.

Midlands police spokesperson, Inspector Ethel Mukwende, could neither deny nor confirm the development.

“I am not sure. Please talk to the national spokesperson (Charity Charamba). I have not been (briefed),” Mukwende said.

However, sources in the know indicated that Machaya was held by Gweru police overnight

He is said to have grabbed 1,000 residential stands from some 3,000 allocated to Gokwe Rural District Council’s Mapfungautsi Extension allegedly after arm-twisting the local authority.

The Midlands politician was removed from his position as provincial minister after the toppling of former President Robert Mugabe and the vanquishing of the G40 Zanu PF faction with which Machaya was associated.

Mugabe was forced out in November after the military staged a bloodless coup paving the way for Emmerson Mnangagwa to take over as the new Zanu PF leader.

Mnangagwa had been fired from government by Mugabe over accusations he had been plotting against the 93-year-old veteran leader.

After Mugabe was forced to resign under military pressure, Mnangagwa was inaugurated as new State president.

– New Zimbabwe

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