A MATAGA Police Station Officer-in-Charge was arrested and appeared in court facing three counts of criminal abuse of office, where he allegedly bought fuel under the pretext of using it for police duties when in fact he intended to divert it to the black market.
Ngqabutho Fuyane (38) appeared before Zvishavane magistrate Mr Shepard Munjanja last week to answer to a charge of fraud and contravening section 140 of Environmental Management Act.
He pleaded not guilty and was remanded in custody to 6 August for trial.
Prosecuting, Miss Caroline Mafunga told the court that on 16 May, Fuyane went to Mataga Service Station where he bought 200 litres of diesel purporting that it was for ZRP Mataga Station.
“The accused bought 200 litres of diesel claiming that it was for the Zimbabwe Republic Police. He paid for the said fuel using his EcoCash account.
“After buying the fuel, he placed it in eight plastic containers and loaded it into a police vehicle and drove off,” said Miss Mafunga.
The court heard that Fuyane converted the fuel to his personal use.
“The accused converted the fuel to his own personal use instead of taking it to Mataga ZRP camp as he had earlier indicated.”
The court further heard that on 28 June, Fuyane who was in the company of his friend identified in court as Chihora, bought another 200 litres of diesel from the same service station claiming that it was for police use.
“With the help of Chihora, Fuyane put the fuel in five 25-litre plastics and three 20-litre jerry cans.
“The fuel was paid for using Chihora’s EcoCash account and Fuyane’s wife EcoCash account.
“After buying the fuel, they loaded their containers into Chihora’s twin cab Ford Ranger and drove off.”
Fuyane did not take the fuel to Mataga Police Station as purported but diverted it to his own use.
The matter came to light when detectives who acted on a tip-off recovered fuel at Fuyane’s place of residence stored in a fowl run leading to his arrest.