By Daniel Nemukuyu
Former Zimbabwe National Road Administration (Zinara) chief executive officer Frank Chitukutuku, who is under investigation for fraud, has been given a 30-day ultimatum to give an account of how he acquired an array of immovable and movable assets worth over US$20 million.
High Court judge Justice Erica Ndewere ordered a freeze of the assets pending finalisation of the criminal case.
Chitukutuku now has to give a detailed statement to the head of the police’s Asset Forfeiture Unit (AFU) within a month.
The State claims Chitukutuku may have acquired his property through criminal activities, hence the need to have the same frozen.
The decision was made following an ex-parte application by Prosecutor-General Mr Kumbirai Hodzi for an unexplained wealth and asset freezing order in terms of Section 37B as read with Section 37H of Presidential Powers (Temporary Measures) (Amendment of the Money Laundering and Proceeds of Crime Act (Chapter 9:24) and Exchange Control Act) Regulations, 2018 (Statutory Instrument 246 of 2018).
Justice Ndewere ruled in favour of the State and barred any interested parties from dealing, in any way, with the property in question.
The order was issued after convincing arguments by the prosecution team led by chief law officer Mr Chris Mutangadura.
Mr Mutangadura heads the asset forfeiture unit at the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA).
Chitukutuku is said to have acquired 10 motor vehicles between September 2013 and April last year.
These vehicles include two Mazda T35 trucks, a Hino Dutro truck, Toyota Land Cruiser, Toyota Prado, Nissan NP200, Range Rover, Hino Ranger and a Land Rover Discovery.
Sometime in 2011, Chitukutuku reportedly acquired residential properties namely: Property measuring 4 048 square metres held under Deed of Transfer 3232/11 situated at Lot 1 of Lot 3 of Lot 56A Borrowdale Estate, Harare and another one measuring 8 853 square metres held under Deed of Transfer 3885/11 situated at Lot 3 of Subdivision C of Subdivision B of Subdivision D of Nthaba of Glen Lorne.
The State also claims Chitukutuku built or acquired a multi-million dollar thatched precast-walled house at the top of a mountain at Belmont Farm, Goromonzi, adding he also has six state-of-the-art fowl runs, five tractors, a 10-tonne UD truck, 4 x 200-litre PVC water tanks, as well as several structures at the farm.
Apart from a long list of expensive properties, Chitukutuku is also said to be the owner of two renowned companies, Farm Pride (Private) Limited situated at 49 Kent Road, Chisipite, Harare and an insurance company, Champions Insurance, which boasts of assets estimated at over US$15 million.
According to the State, Chitukutuku acquired the properties at a time he was lawfully earning a combined $8 500 from Zinara as well as his farming activities. The Herald