Prosecutors decline to represent state after one of their own was arrested in Chombo case

National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) officials have abandoned the case of former cabinet minister Ignatius Chombo’s in apparent solidarity with State Prosecutor Tapiwa Kasema who was earlier this week arrested on charges of criminal abuse of office after he consented to the release of Chombo’s passport.

Kasema was hauled before Harare magistrates court on Wednesday on charges that he had unlawfully facilitated for Chombo to temporarily have his passport back and now NPA officials appear reluctant to represent the State.

Chombo through his lawyers Tungamirai Muganhiri and Lovemore Madhuku intends to make an application for an obedience order to compel the State to obey an order which was granted on May 10 by Harare Magistrate Barbra Mateko to release his passport.

The obedience order is not popular in the country as it was last sought in the 1990’s.

The latest stand-off saw Chombo and his legal counsel spend the whole of Wednesday at court seeking an audience with the court only to leave the court premises way after hours at 1700 hours without being assisted.

The same scenario repeated itself today as they also failed to be heard.

Chombo’s passport was released to him after the NPA through Kasema had consented to his application for the release on the grounds that he wanted to seek medical attention in South Africa.

There was, however, a scuffle at Robert Mugabe International Airport after security agents seized Chombo’s passport before surrendering it at the Harare Magistrates’ Court clerk office.

Details are still sketchy as to how it was surrendered as he is expected to sign for its release as the norm.