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Gutu DDC trial postponed

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Gutu DDC trial postponed



MASVINGO – Gutu Magistrate, Edwin Marecha on Monday postponed the trial of Gutu District Deputy Development Coordinator (DDC) Benedict Buddy Gwede (41) to April 29, 2024, because the State is still carrying out investigations.
Gwede is facing criminal abuse of charges after he allegedly stole a date stamp from his immediate boss, Gutu DDC Chiedza Tafireyi and certified a fake land offer deed.
He also received an application for land and issued an offer letter, a role that does not fall under his office but the Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Resettlement.
He was arrested by the Police on Friday, March 22, 2024 and spent the weekend in remand prison. He is out on US$300 bail.
Tafirei’s date stamp was used to authentic an illegal offer letter he gave to Joseph Muzapi for Plot Number 21, Craig Farm, Gutu. The farm belongs to businessman Francis Toringepi.
Circumstances of the case are that Toringepi who has ownership of the farm since February 10, 2015, suffered losses when Muzapi went to the farm armed with a fake offer letter and destroyed his crops in December last year.
Contrary to his roles, and sometime in 2023, Gwede personally received a land application from Muzapi at the DDC’s office whereas land applications should be submitted to the Gutu District Lands Office.
He then took advantage of Tafirei’s absence and wrote an offer letter for Plot Number 21, Craig Farm, Gutu in Muzapi’s name. He also stamped the offer letter using Tafirei’s date stamp without her knowledge and approval.
He went on to write a letter to Gutu Rural District Council (RDC) Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Alexander Mtembwa to effect ownership change of the farm and handed the letter and offer letter to Muzapi’s friend Innocent Tarugarira.
Muzapi went to the farm after the local authority had effected the changes sometime in December 2023. He hired a tractor that ploughed Toringepi’s crops and ordered his workers and family to vacate the farm.
Toringepi was informed of the matter and he filed a Police report in Harare leading to investigations into the matter.
Rachel Murape prosecuted.

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