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Ukrainian smuggled into Zimbabwe, Immigration officers in trouble

by Desmond Nleya /Simbarashe Sithole
12 Oct 2023 at 20:27hrs | Views
Four Plumtree immigration officers find themselves embroiled in a scandal as they stand accused of fraudulent and corrupt activities involving the unlawful entry of a Ukrainian national into Zimbabwe, bypassing established procedures. The individuals involved in this case, Donald Pfungwa Chihowa (35), Tsitsi Mathose (45), Belinda Mudavanhu (33), and Philip Kudada (45), who are stationed at the Plumtree Border Post, recently appeared before Plumtree Magistrate Joshua Nembaware on charges of abuse of office.

The charges stem from events that transpired in February 2023 when the four officers allegedly conspired to grant Zhdandva Iryna, a Ukrainian national, a Zimbabwean visa without adhering to the proper immigration protocols. To further obscure their illicit dealings, it is claimed that the accused officers date-stamped Ukrainian documents while intentionally concealing the reference numbers on the stamps.

The court was informed that, "In an effort to favor the Ukrainian national or to conceal their illicit deal, the accused officers date-stamped the documents using a Plumtree Immigration Border Post date stamp, which had its serial numbers deliberately obscured to protect the identity of the responsible immigration officer."

The alleged misconduct came to light on August 7, 2023, when a tip-off prompted an investigation by the Criminal Investigation Department (CID). As a result of the ongoing investigation, the accused officers have been released on bail, with each of them being required to post ZWL$100,000 in bail money. They are scheduled to appear in court again on October 17, 2023.

Representing the state in this case is Mr. Roben Mukura.

Source - Byo24News