Home » Judicial » Ex-Airzim Boss Raps Goche, Kadzura

Former Air Zimbabwe Holdings (Pvt) Ltd group CEO Peter Chikumba, yesterday accused former Minister of Transport and Infrastructural Development, Cde Nicholas Goche and the airline’s former chairman Jonathan Kadzura, of causing his arrest in a bid to bar him from claiming his benefits from the airline.Chikumba said the allegations against him are malicious, frivolous and vexatious. He said Cde Goche and Mr Kadzura were used to firing CEO’s hence when he voluntarily resigned, they decided to fix him. He also accused the investigating officer in the case of being used by some politicians to arrest him.

Chikumba revealed this while testifying in the ongoing trial in which he is jointly charged with the airline’s secretary Grace Pfumbidzai on charges of criminal abuse of duty as public officers and fraud.

The duo is said to have defrauded the airline of euro5 175 593 and $502 748 in an alleged insurance scam.

“Prior to this particular investigation, Mr Kadzura and Cde Goche after receiving my resignation following my successful completion of my term in office, they jointly decided and agreed to withhold my terminal benefits. The reason provided in writing was that the board and the Ministry wanted to instruct that a forensic audit be carried out and that my terminal benefits would not be paid until the results were out,” he said.

“For two years, I followed up on the issue of my benefits and was told that further investigations were being carried out. The background of this matter is unclear, a violation of my rights and an attempt to arm twist me for my personal decision to leave the airline voluntarily as opposed to practice at Airzim wherefore 25 years all CEO’s had to be fired by the Ministry or the board and I believe that I denied them the opportunity to fire me.”

Chikumba said that when the police first called him they told him that he was going to be a State witness, but was surprised when he was later arrested and became an accused person.

He said when he was at the police station, the investigating officer received a phone call from someone whom he was referring to as Sir.

“When the I.O was aising me that they wanted me as a State witness, he then received a phone call and from the way he was talking to the person on the other end, it showed that he was from a higher office. That person asked him to come for a meeting and he quickly went there. He came back after some hours and told me that I was now an accused person,” he said.

He added, “The behaviour of the investigating officer and his arrogance in court clearly testifies to his abuse of state machinery which in my mind I relate to the political elements in the background I have been working in.”

After giving his evidence led by his lawyer Mr Admire Rubaya, Chikumba was then cross-examined by Pfumbidzai’s lawyer Aocate Webster Chinamhora, who was instructed by Mr Andrew Muvirimi. A Chinamhora questioned why Chikumba did not take action when he received a letter from Navistar thanking him for their appointment.

He said that if he was not involved in the appointment of Navistar, he should have done something or raised the issue with the board.

Chikumba was asked to read part of the letter from Navistar which read “We thank you for appointing us as your broker for the above . . . ”

A Chinamhora then asked “What was your reaction when you received the letter, did you even bother to write them back asking why they were thanking you for something you did not know?” In response, Chikumba said he was not surprised as he just referred the letter to Pfumbidzai to act on it relevantly.

A Chinamhora also attacked Chikumba saying that his Doctorate he used to get the job at Airzim was fake as it was obtained from an unregistered university.

Source : The Herald