I was framed: Madzibaba Gathry

By Tarisai Machakaire

Self-styled prophet, Gathry Chiredzero, aka Madzibaba Gathry — who allegedly breached President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s close security in December and was reportedly nabbed with a loaded firearm — has said he was framed because he left the firearm at the entrance, a Harare court heard yesterday.

Self-styled prophet, Gathry Chiredzero, aka Madzibaba Gathry
Self-styled prophet, Gathry Chiredzero, aka Madzibaba Gathry

His trial was adjourned by Harare magistrate Yeukai Chigodora after he told the court that he was unfit to stand trial. He produced a document proving that he is due for an X-ray.

Chiredzero is answering charges of possession of offensive weapons at public gathering, impersonating a public official and forgery.

The case continues on June 25.

“The accused shall state that the Central Intelligence Organisation and Anti-Corruption identification cards were legitimately given to him as a CIO informer.

“He has given names of the issuers and it is not for him to delve into whether they are genuine or fake,” reads Chiredzero’s defence outline.

“He denies being found in possession of a firearm on the day in question because it was booked and left at the gate, registered and certified.”

The 40-year-old was arrested in December last year after military police discovered that he had positioned himself close to the president armed with a pistol.

He is facing charges of possession of an offensive weapon at a public gathering, impersonation and forgery.

According to court papers, upon his arrest, Chiredzero was trying to disguise his identity by controlling movement of people at the renaming of King George (KGVI) Barracks to Josiah Magama Tongogara Barracks in Harare.

The court further heard that two days before this incident, Chiredzero had allegedly used the same trick before gaining entry into the State House, where Cabinet ministers were taking oaths of office.

Chiredzero allegedly sneaked into State House on December 4 during the inauguration of Cabinet ministers. He was allegedly masquerading as a State security agent and was spotted near the podium controlling human traffic.

According to court papers, it was later discovered that Chiredzero had produced a fake Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) identity card at the security checkpoint to gain entry into State House.

He used the same trick on December 6, 2018 and allegedly broke into Mnangagwa’s security team at Josiah Magama Tongogara Barracks, where he arrived at the venue in the company of two unidentified accomplices driving a BMW X5.

Chiredzero reportedly produced a fake CIO identity card bearing his name.

While at the venue, Chiredzero was seen roaming around the front seats before he allegedly positioned himself close to the podium, where Mnangagwa was addressing the gathering.

Chiredzero was intercepted by alert military personnel, who inquired about his presence.

He reportedly claimed to be a CIO operative and upon realising that Chiredzero was being quizzed by soldiers, his unidentified accomplices sneaked out of the venue and disappeared.

The court heard that Chiredzero was found in possession of a forged Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission identity card inscribed “Government of Zimbabwe executive director anti-corruption” and a fake metal driver’s licence issued in his name.

The State further alleged military personnel also established that Chiredzero was a bogus CIO operative and he had a 38mm special Amando Rossi South African revolver with three live rounds of ammunition and two spent cartridges. Daily News

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