By Mashudu Netsianda
A Bulawayo woman masqueraded as a police boss before storming into the ordinance stores in anti-riot gear where she allegedly ordered a “subordinate” to give her a police uniform, a badge and cap for the rank of a superintendent, a magistrate heard yesterday.
Bulawayo magistrate, Mr Isheunesu Matova, heard this when Lorraine Mpofu (38) of Mpopoma suburb appeared before him facing charges of fraud and impersonation.
She was remanded out of custody to January 8, 2018 pending the commencement of her trial.
Prosecuting, Mr Carlington Dhliwayo said on August 15 this year at around 10AM, Mpofu, who was dressed in anti-riot gear, went to the Matabeleland North police ordinance stores in Bulawayo.
She approached one Sergeant Esnath Govo and requested to see the officer-in-charge.
Mpofu was told that the officer-in-charge of ordinance stores was on leave.
The court heard that Mpofu introduced herself as a superintendent before she allegedly requested to be given uniforms by Sgt Govo.“Sgt Govo phoned her officer-in-charge who authorised her to go ahead and give Mpofu the regalia she wanted,” said Mr Dhliwayo.
Mpofu was issued with the uniform which comprised a three-piece winter suit, a summer skirt, grey shirt, a badge, jacket, a cap and a pair of riot trousers all valued at $202,50.
“On August 28 this year at around 11.45AM, Mpofu went to the office of one Inspector Elison Phiri, the officer-in-charge of ordinance stores in Bulawayo. Mpofu was in the company a junior cop only identified as Constable Mutamba,” said Mr Dhliwayo.
The court heard that the accused person introduced herself as Superintendent Mpofu from Police General Headquarters’ operations department. She requested to be given a peak gold cap for the rank of a superintendent.
Insp Phiri asked to see Mpofu’s police identity card. Mpofu told Insp Phiri that she left the document at her home.
Insp Phiri then requested Mpofu’s force number and the accused person gave him 982398 Z as her number.
“Insp Phiri made an inquiry with Police General Headquarters and the Salary Service Bureau to establish whether Mpofu was indeed a genuine cop. It emerged that no such name existed in the Zimbabwe Republic Police,” said Mr Dhliwayo.
A report was made at Bulawayo Central Police Station leading to Mpofu’s arrest. Further investigations led to the recovery of the police regalia.
Mpofu is being represented by Mr Byron Sengweni of Sengweni Legal Practice. The Chronicle