Latest on Freeman who was picked up by police over links with robbers: Startling details emerge

Freeman with late armed robber Godknows Machingura

Popular musician, Energy Chizanga, AKA Freeman, has denied links to robbery conspiracy although admitting he was once a close friend to one of the suspects who was shot dead by police in December last year.

Police have charged the Zimdancehall star with “Conspiracy to Commit Robbery”.

He was picked up Tuesday for questioning by Harare CID Homicide section in connection with the alleged crime which took place on 25 November 2023.

Police claim Chizanga “conspired with the late Godfrey Machingura and one Paul Enest Muzenge Zhou to commit an armed robbery against Paul Chimbodza of house number 51 Dunkled Road Mt Pleasant, Harare where it is further alleged that he supplied information in relation to the residential address of the victim Paul Chimbodza”.

In his warned and cautioned statement later circulated on social media, the artist denied any links with the said suspects.

“I vehemently deny the allegations in toto and will put the state to the strictest of proof to each and every allegation thereof,” he said.

“I never entered into any agreement with the said Machingura, Muzenge or any other person for the commission of a crime or for the intended purpose of assisting the commission of any crime (armed robbery in this case). I never conspired with anyone to commit armed robbery as alleged.

“I never met with or spoke to Godfrey Machingura or Paul Ernest Muzenge on 25 November 2023 nor supply them with the residential address of one Paul Chimbodza as alleged or at all.

“For the record, I do not even know the said Paul Chimbodza, I have never met with him and have never visited his house.

“I do not even know where he stays and no one gave me his address. I also never met and do not know Paul Ernest Muzenge.”

Added the musician, “I challenge the said Muzenge to prove or produce evidence of such a meeting between himself, Machingura and myself (if at all) on 25 November 2023 as alleged.

“I further challenge Muzenge to produce evidence of any call history or text message or whatsapp message or any other form of communication he or anyone may allege I did to him or Machingura on the said date allegedly giving them Paul Chimbodza’s residential address. Such NEVER happened. The only person I knew was Machingura.

“I previously responded to a H-Metro newspaper article setting the record straight for the sake of my legions of fans and business, potential business associates and the nation at large.

“In brief, I wish to further state that I started interacting with Machingura back in 2017 when my management team was contacted by Machingura inviting me to perform at a show he was organising in Durban.

“Machingura presented himself to my management as a music promoter and someone who really liked my music. My management entered into an agreement with him and Machingura paid for the whole show, including our air tickets to and from Durban (inclusive of all expenses, food and accommodation).

“Our first show together was a huge success such that he invited me to another show in Durban in 2018. Ever since that time, we grew to be friends since I was very appreciative of the support he extended to me as a musician and many other musicians at a very difficult time.

“My association with Machingura was purely innocent and founded business/relationship. I had on some music entertainment photos taken with him innocently, the same way he would have pictures taken with many other artists.

“I never knew or suspected that he could be involved with armed robbery or crime. At least I never saw anything that could have made me suspicious or suspect that he was involved in crime.

“Sometimes he would invite me and my band members to stay at his house if we had shows in Joburg, South Africa and he would also tell me whenever he was travelling to Zimbabwe. However, around 2021 he started withdrawing himself from me and would not share much information about his movement and travels to Zimbabwe.

“Sometimes I would phone him when I got to Joburg asking if he was in town only for him to tell me that he was in Zimbabwe. I also never knew about his alleged associates and association with armed robbers.

“For the record, I am a musician and a family man who has worked so hard to build my brand to where it is. I would never willingly, intentionally and knowingly associate with any criminal elements because this will definitely affect my family, music, brand and professional carrier.

“In recent times, Machingura and I were no longer as close as we had become between 2017 and 2020.

“I never knew that Machingura was now involved in crime. This probably explains why he had withdrawn himself from me. It is also unfair, malicious and insensitive for Muzenge or any other person to falsely allege that I supplied them with information that was used or to be used to commit armed robbery. That is FALSE.

“For the record once again, on the said date: 25 November 2023, 1 left my house and met with my band crew in town and we travelled to Chinhoyi where we had a show at Sinoia Primary School. My wife and band members can confirm that I never at any stage on that day met with Machingura and Muzenge.

“I also give the police full access to my phone to physically check if I ever shared any such information as alleged on the day in issue or at all. Better still, the police have the ability and MUST forensically examine Machingura and Muzenge’s phones to see if at all I ever shared with them Chimbodza’s residential address as alleged.

“Needless to say, the police have been lied to by this Muzenge guy if it is true that he is the one who alleged that I supplied them with Chimbodza’s residential address. I do not know the circumstances under which he is alleged to have claimed that I gave him and Machingura Chimbodza’s residential address. The said Chimbodza can also easily confirm that we are not friends, we have never met, I have never visited his house and there is no way I would have shared information about a person I have never known or heard of.”

The musician said that those spreading false allegations were trying to destroy his reputation and career.

“Whoever is behind these false allegations is bent on destroying my reputation, music brand and career but the truth shall set me free. I am very innocent. I will emerge STRONGER,” he said. ZimLive.

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