Former health minister back in court Tuesday

A Harare magistrate has rolled over the matter of former Health and Child Care minister David Parirenyatwa to Tuesday for a continuation of trial.

Regional magistrate Hosea Mujaya postponed the matter to July 02 for a possible continuation of the trial.

Parirenyatwa appeared in court facing charges of criminal abuse of offices.

The state led by Brian Vito heard that charges against Parirenyatwa arose on June 4 this year when he was still Minister of Health and Child Care.

The state heard that Parirenyatwa allegedly abused his position as a public officer and directed NatPharm board chairperson Dr George Washaya to terminate the contract of Flora Sifeku as managing director, allegedly showing favour for Newman Madzikwa, who had once been sacked from the pharmaceutical company for reportedly selling donated drugs.

At the time he was fired in September 2009, Madzikwa was NatPharm’s Masvingo branch manager.

The indictment also revealed that Parirenyatwa had indicated that he required Sifeku’s services at the ministry’s head office for an indefinite period.

The board, it is alleged, complied with the former minister’s directive and gave Sifeku and Madzikwa six months contracts each as managing directors effective June 1 to November 30 this year.

It is alleged that Parirenyatwa’s conduct created double dipping on NatPharm funds as the company was paying two salaries towards the managing director’s position, thereby prejudicing it of a total of $30 006.