Fungai Lupande Harare Bureau
A POLITICAL party leader and three of his colleagues arrested while trying to petrol bomb the First Family’s Alpha Omega Dairy farm in Mazowe, appeared in court yesterday.
Zimbabwe People’s Front president Owen Kuchata, 34, and three others – Borman Ngwenya, 30, Solomon Makumbe, 29, and Silas Pfupa, 37, – appeared before Harare provincial magistrate Vakayi Chikwekwe under heavy security.
They are facing charges of possessing weaponry for sabotage and money laundering for purposes of terrorism.
Chikwekwe remanded the quartet to February 8 and advised them to apply for bail at the High Court.
The court heard that Ngwenya and Makumbe are attached to 1 Field Regiment and Zimbabwe Intelligence Corps, respectively.
The prosecutor, Michael Reza, alleged that on Friday last week around 4PM, police received a tip-off that the quartet was planning to bomb Alpha Omega Dairy’s processing plant and tuckshop during the night.
The dairy’s processing plant and tuckshop are located at Gushungo Dairy Estate, Jumbo Road in Mazowe and the property belongs to the First Family.
Acting on the tip-off, the police proceeded to the farm and laid an ambush about 100 metres from the quartet’s target.
Around 10PM, the detectives saw the men approaching the dairy’s processing plant and immediately arrested them.
They searched them and recovered four Molotov cocktails (petrol bombs), ammonium nitrate, nails and sand in 750ml brandy bottles.
They also recovered a Zimbabwe People’s Front party manifesto, party constitution and documents relating to party activities.
It is alleged that the quartet held several meetings to acquire funding during their preparation to carry out the banditry, terrorism and sabotage activities.
The quartet made voluntary indications to the police on Sunday.