MThe former Information and Communication Technology minister, Supa Mandiwanzira successfully applied for the deferment of the handing down of the ruling in his application for referral to the constitutional court.
Mandiwanzira through his lawyers Advocates Thembinkosi Magwaliba and Brian Hungwe instructed by Selby Hwacha made the application pending the determination by the High Court of the urgent chamber application filed for the stay all proceedings at the Magistrate’s court.
Ruling in favour of the application, Regional Magistrate Elijah Makomo indicated that there was no harm in waiting for the High Court to make its decision and if their application is thrown out, he will hand over his ruling tomorrow and trial will proceed.
Mandiwanzira is out on $2 000 bail coupled with stringent conditions.
He allegedly engaged the services of a South African company called Megawatt Private Limited at NetOne without going to tender. Megawatt was hired to review prices charged by a Chinese firm, Huawei Technologies, for the supply of network expansion and modernisation equipment to NetOne. Of the fees charged, Megawatt successfully negotiated for a reduction of $30 million.
After the negotiations, Mandiwanzira instructed then NetOne chief executive officer Reward Kangai and some board members to pay Megawatt $4 million. According to the State papers, $1 million was for consultancy while $3 million was termed “success fee”. However, NetOne declined to pay Megawatt arguing that tender procedures had not been followed.
NetOne argued that legally, it had no valid contract with Megawatt.
Mandiwanzira is also being accused of irregularly appointing his personal assistant to be a board member for NetOne.