HARARE businessman Agripa “Bopela” Masiyakurima caused a scene at the magistrates’ court yesterday when he demanded that Information and Communications Technology minister Supa Mandiwanzira be tried for allegedly damaging his crane.
Masiyakurima wanted Mandiwanzira to be charged for sending his employees Charles Mtetwa (34) and Tapiwa Garapo (46) to damage the latter’s machinery.
The drama started when Mtetwa and Garapo appeared before magistrate Tilda Mazhande charged with malicious damage to Masiyakurima’s property.
The businessman told the court that he had bought the crane from the Nyanga South MP for $411 000 as payback for being awarded the tender to erect 200 NetOne base stations throughout the country.
“Your Worship, I won’t testify further if Supa Mandiwanzira is not brought in the dock. He is the one who sent these guys to destroy my crane.
“I sold my house to raise funds after I got a contract to build 100 base stations worth $3,7 million. Mandiwanzira wanted 40% of the amount for a bribe, which I refused,” Masiyakurima told court.
He added: “He then tried to force me to buy his two 20-cubic-metre tippers at a higher price. He told me that he must benefit somehow in my $3,7 million
NetOne contract and I succumbed since I did not want tension with the minister. I bought his crane which I defaulted paying by 30 days and he then sent his people to damage my crane after I finished paying him.”
When the magistrate ordered him to direct his complaint to prosecutor Idah Maromo, Masiyakurima kept demanding that Mandiwanzira be charged together with Mtetwa and Garapo.
The matter was postponed to Friday.
It is the State’s case that on January 11, 2016, Mtetwa and Garapo went to the complainant Tendai Masiyakurima’s workplace and entered the premises without his consent.
The two suspects then allegedly damaged the crane machine which was inside the premises.
It is alleged upon questioning the suspects, they alleged that they had been sent by their superiors, but without any written document to support their actions.
The damaged crane is estimated at $450 000.