Self-styled prophet Madzibaba John Karembera, who had been gifted with two brand new vehicles – a Toyota Hino Trcu Dutro and Toyota Dyna truck by one of the key suspects in the Chinhoyi US$2,7 million money heist – told the court that he still wants his vehicles back.
Karembera, who is the fourth State witness in this robbery case, said this during cross-examination where he also explained how he was rewarded by his clients.
“I do not charge my clients (for spiritual services) but out of their own will, some buy me cars, houses or residential stands as a reward.
“In this particular instance, Moreblessing Mushore, who used to come with Tendai Zuze (accomplice in the matter), gave me the vehicles as an appreciation. Police haven’t returned the vehicles back to me. I am still waiting for the cars to be returned,” he said.
Karembera said he knew Mushore as a person whom he used to offer spiritual services. He said he was called to come from Mutare to collect his surprise gift of two vehicles from Zuze at a car sale in Mbare sometime in January 2021.
Unfortunately, four days later Karembera was called by CID Mutare who told him to surrender the vehicles to police as they were conducting investigations.
Karembera told the court that he was not aware of the specific relationship that was between Mushore and Zuze.
The trial could not proceed with the next witness as the legal counsel of the seven accused persons demanded that they inspect two safes containing cash that had been tendered as an exhibit.
The regional magistrate Mr Clever Tsikwa adjourned the trial to May 26.
Prosecuting, Mr Loveit Muringwa alleged that on January 6, 2021, the three security staffers Nomatter Jonga (43), Mathew Simango (66) and Fanuel Musakwa (34) were tasked to carry seven boxes containing US$2 775 000 and $43 090.
This cash was to be ferried to ZB branches – Chinhoyi US$75 000, Kadoma US$25 000, Kwekwe and Gweru US$150 000 each, Bulawayo US$200 000, Gwanda US$50 000 and Zvishavane US$100 000.
They were travelling in a Toyota Hilux single cab with a canopy, secured with a tracker and emergency panic button.
The initial allegations given in court were that the three hatched a plan to steal the money and connived with six others.
It is alleged that Jonga, Simango and Musakwa picked three unknown suspects at the Westgate roundabout in Harare and drove to Inkomo tollgate where they collected a box containing $43 090, which was supposed to be deposited at the bank, and then picked up three more men at Inkomo Barracks turn-off as they drove towards Chinhoyi.
Upon reaching the 60km peg, Jonga stopped the vehicle and a fake robbery was staged.
The State alleges that an Isuzu twin-cab immediately arrived at the scene with people who were armed with pistols.
Jonga, Simango and Musakwa surrendered their pistol and rifle before driving their Toyota Hilux for about 900 metres where the gang offloaded the cash boxes into the Isuzu which then drove off.
Accused persons in the matter are the mastermind of the heist Shadreck Njowa (55), Neverson Mwamuka (35), Trymore Chapfika (36), Tatenda Gadzikwa (39),Dennis Madondo (30),Tozivepi Chirara and Tendai Zuze (35).
The total cash of US$693 026 and $1 410, motor vehicles worth US$133 400, three houses valued at US$115 000 bringing to total value recovered to US$941 426.