By Mashudu Netsianda
The High Court has dismissed an application for bail pending trial by a serial Bulawayo fraudster who allegedly masqueraded as a top Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) officer and President Mnangagwa’s close security aide and duped Ingwebu Breweries of 375 litres of fuel and $1 200.
Henessy Dube (40) of Entumbane suburb allegedly met Ingwebu Breweries managing director Mr Dumisani Mhlanga and produced a fake CIO identity card.
He identified himself as a director of operations in the CIO.
Dube then allegedly offered to assist the company to recover money from its debtors purportedly using his influence by virtue of being in the President’s Office. He is also facing charges of raping two women he had hired as nurse aides and stealing his brother’s identity card, academic and professional certificates and using them to secure a teaching job at a school in Tsholotsho district.
Dube is facing charges of fraud, impersonating a public officer, theft, rape and making a false statement to deceive a registration officer in violation of Section 10 (1) (b) of the National Registration Act.
The ruling by Bulawayo High Court judge Justice Martin Makonese follows an application for bail pending trial by Dube through his lawyers Tanaka Law Chambers citing the State as a respondent.
Justice Makonese ruled that there was no guarantee that if released on bail Dube would not abscond given the gravity of the offences he allegedly committed.
“In this present case, the applicant faces several charges of rape, fraud relating to the theft of identity documents and impersonation. As regards to his previous conduct, there is sufficient proof that he faced charges of rape and theft in Kezi and those dockets were closed after he disappeared,” said the judge.
“There is an outstanding warrant of arrest against the applicant and with his previous abscondment, it is clear that applicant is not a suitable candidate for bail. I am satisfied that from the aforegoing, the applicant is not a suitable candidate for bail and in the result, the application for bail pending trial is hereby dismissed.”
In his bail statement, Dube said he was a proper candidate for bail and argued that chances of absconding were non-existent. He further contended that stringent reporting conditions would cure the fear of abscondment.
Dube further argued that the seriousness of the offences was not a factor against the granting of bail. He said the State case is weak and he is willing to stand trial.
The State, which was represented by Mr Khumbulani Ndlovu, opposed the application, arguing that Dube was a flight risk.
One of the investigating officers also testified that Dube had been on the run hence there was no guarantee that if released on bail, he would stand trial.
“In this matter, the applicant’s previous conduct reflects that he has propensity to abscond to avoid trial. The past conduct is consistent with applicant’s desire to flee on the day of his arrest,” said the investigating officer.
In papers before the court, it was stated that sometime at the beginning of May this year during the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair, Dube hatched a plan and went to Ingwebu Breweries head offices in Bulawayo intending to see management.
During that time, Ingwebu Breweries was facing operational challenges, some of which emanated from a failure by its debtors to honour their commitments.
Dube approached the company’s managing director and introduced himself as the director of operations at the CIO based in Harare. He told Mr Mhlanga that he was in Bulawayo as part of a team of President Mnangagwa’s close security aides during the ZITF period.
He produced a fake CIO identity card bearing the names Majaha Julian Dube and indicated to the Ingwebu Breweries managing director that he had picked information pertaining to the ill-treatment of workers and war veterans by management including the impending retrenchment of workers.
Dube told the managing director that the President was not amused and due to his misrepresentation, Mr Mhlanga was convinced and he briefed Dube on the goings on at the company with the accused person promising to render assistance.
A few days later, Dube returned to Ingwebu Breweries and offered to use his authority to pressurise the company’s debtors, which included companies contracted on beerhall franchise, to pay their debts and the management agreed.
Some debtors reportedly paid up after Dube’s intervention.
Dube further pressurised management at Ingwebu Breweries to employ his friends under the guise that they were students on attachment from the CIO.
Their contracts were signed by management and they were given tasks to spy within the company’s various departments.
It was later established that the accused person was not employed by the CIO and due to his misrepresentation, Dube benefited in the form of 375 litres of fuel allocation and $1 200 among other undisclosed benefits.
It also emerged in court that on December 7, 2012, Dube acquired a national identity card under the names Henessy Dube NR 08-682325-J-53 bearing his portrait. On June 3, 2017, Dube allegedly took another identity card NR 08-719040-R-53 with his picture but under the names Majaha Julian Dube.
Checks with Registrar-General’s Office showed that the names Majaha Julian Dube and all the particulars including the portrait belonged to his brother based in South Africa and is suspected to have acquired citizenship of that country.
Armed with his brother’s identity card and his academic certificates, Dube applied for a teaching post in the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education. He was subsequently employed as a teacher and deployed in Tsholotsho in Matabeleland North under EC Number 5710690W.
He however, unceremoniously breached the contract and absconded. Dube has a previous conviction after masquerading as a doctor for six months at Mpilo Central Hospital. The Chronicle