Dr Gideon Gono beats up an accountant

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FORMER Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Governor Dr Gideon Gono allegedly assaulted an accountant at his Lunar Chickens farm whom he accused of accessing company information without authority.

Dr Gono, who is also Lunar Chickens chairman and owner, faces allegations of whipping George Chambara on June 14 this year after a misunderstanding. Chambara's lawyers, Mambosasa Legal Practitioners, said a report of assault was made at Harare Central Police Station under IR Number 060744, but no progress had been made on the case.

Mambosasa Legal Practitioners have since written to Commissioner General of Police Augustine Chihuri complaining over the manner in which the assault report was being handled.

"Over a month has lapsed since our client reported the assault perpetrated against his person by Dr Gideon Gono, yet no action whatsoever has been taken by the police. In a bid to frustrate our client's labour claims, the employer is now trumping up charges of fraud and in the process is clearly abusing services of the police force. We trust that the matter shall be accorded your attention and attended to in a professional manner which does not soil the good name of our police force," the firm wrote yesterday.

The letter to the police was also copied to the National Prosecuting Authority.

In a letter to the company chief executive on June 10, 2014, Chambara's lawyers Mambosasa demanded payment of $10,000 as damages for the "pain and suffering emanating from the assault".

Chambara demanded $74,880 for constructive dismissal from work and $8,320 being income for the period stretching from January to April 2014. He said Dr Gono failed to apologise for the assault despite discovering the real culprit in the illegal accessing of the company information.

"On Tuesday June 3, 2014, he (Chambara) was subjected to inhuman and degrading conduct reminiscent of the dark ages of slavery and colonialism. He was whipped by the Supreme Chairman (of Lunar Chickens) one Dr Gideon Gono on unfounded allegations of stealing undisclosed company information from Slaughterland. Investigations later on revealed that the person who had actually been mistaken for our client is one Maedzenge," said the legal firm.

Chambara argued that the allegations of illegally accessing company information were unfounded, but were framed to frustrate his efforts to assert his labour rights.

Responding to the June 10 letter, Dr Gono's lawyer Herbert Chitapi of TH Chitapi and Associates, who was representing Lunar Chickens, said his client was denying the allegations.

"Our instructions at this stage are that the parties are in engagement over your client's complaints and other matters of concern to our client requiring explanation by your client arising from the discharge of his duties. Suffice at this stage to mention that your client's claims have not been admitted. We thus request you to hold over your threatened litigation. We will be responding in substance over the next few days," said Chitapi.

Detectives from Criminal Investigations Department's Fraud Squad yesterday arrested Chambara at his house on allegations of fraud.


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