It never rains but heavily pours for former Minister of Tourism Prisca Mupfumira. Her latest bid to gain freedom has been quashed as Harare Magistrate Elijah Makomo refused to grant her bail a few hours ago. The former minister had yet again approached the courts for temporary relief but she was dealt a heavy blow.
The Court ruled that Mupfumirais a flight risk as she owns two passports, an ordinary passport and a diplomatic passport. The diplomatic passport expires in 2028. The magistrate said this weighed heavily in favour of not granting her bail. He said,”clealy this visa gives her residence in the UK for the next 9 years. This means she has strong connections with that country”. Mupfumira also owns properties in the UK.
The magistrate also ruled that considering the gravity of the offence the former minister is facing, she is likely to abscond trial. Mupfumira is facing seven counts of criminal abuse of office when she was still the Labour minister. She is alleged to have prejudiced NSSA over US 95 million. The seriousness of an offence is one factor that is usually considered in bail applications.
Mupfumira was arrested on 25 July 2019 and has been lodged at remand prison ever since. She has made countless frantic efforts to have bail granted to no avail. She has been remanded in custody to 28 September 2019.