Mashudu Netsianda , Senior Court Reporter
NEWLY-elected Bulawayo Deputy Mayor Tinashe Kambarami is a convicted thief who was fined by a court for stealing an electrical extension cord, it has emerged.
According to court records, Kambarami (32) was in July fined $80 or 18 days in prison for stealing the extension cord from an electrician he had hired to do manual work at his offices.
The deputy Mayor of Norwich Court in the city’s Central Business District was convicted of theft by Bulawayo magistrate, Ms Sharon Rosemani.
He had been given up to the end of July to pay the fine, but defaulted resulting in a warrant of arrest being issued against him.
Kambarami then paid the fine on August 15.
Prosecuting, Mr Raymond Makaza said on August 1 last year, Kambarami offered the complainant, Mr Washington Chirikuudzi (68), some manual work at his business offices.
The court heard that Kambarami then asked the complainant to leave his tools at his offices inside a safe before knocking off.
“When the complainant returned on the following morning, he discovered that his extension cord was missing. When the complainant inquired about the whereabouts of his electrical cable, Kambarami admitted that he took it and promised to return it,” said Mr Makaza.
However, Kambarami did not return the cable despite pleas from the complainant.
Mr Chirikuudzi got fed up with Kambarami’s excuses and reported the matter to the police leading to the deputy Mayor’s arrest.
The extension cord measuring 30 metres was not recovered.
Kambarami was last month issued with summons for civil imprisonment over a debt of nearly $40 000 in unpaid rentals and legal costs.
The legal costs emanate from a two-year legal battle between Kambarami and the National Railways of Zimbabwe Contribution Pension Fund (NRZCPF) over rental arrears.
He was evicted from the NRZCPF building in Bulawayo after failing to pay $11 300,64 rental arrears including holding over damages of $1 250 per month calculated from September 29, 2015 to date.
Kambarami entered into a lease agreement with NRZCPF in September 2015 but defaulted in payment of rentals resulting in his eviction and the culmination of a series of lawsuits.
Last year in December, Kambarami lost some of his properties after they were attached by the Sheriff of the High Court and auctioned for failing to pay the debt.
Kambarami is obliged to either pay a total of $38 752,01 in legal costs, accrued holding over damages and rentals including interest or face civil imprisonment of up to 90 days in jail.
The court will conduct an inquiry into Kambarami’s financial position and depending on the circumstances; it may commit him to prison or alternatively give him further time to pay the money in instalments over a specified period.
According to the summons, Kambarami has an option to approach a judgment creditor before the date of the hearing and make an offer of settlement of the amount due.
Kambarami was elected Councillor for Ward Three in the July 30 harmonised elections after trouncing former Bulawayo mayor Mr Martin Moyo in the party’s primaries.
Last week, he was elected deputy mayor after beating his closest rival Clr Mlandu Ncube of Ward One. — @mashnets