Freedom Mupanedemo Midlands Bureau
Gokwe Town secretary, Melania Mandeya, who is facing abuse of office charges was on Monday denied bail by Gokwe Magistrate, Mr Musaiwona Shortgame who argued that she faces serious charges and was a flight risk.
Mandeya, who is facing four counts of abuse of office, was represented by Mr Solomon Kangambeu of Chitere and Chidawanyika Legal practitioners.
She was remanded in custody to February 14 but her lawyers hinted they would appeal.
The State case led by prosecutor, Mr Michael Mhene was that sometime in 2015, Mandeya deliberately gave her relative, one Ms Zvichapera Zunzanyika a contract to supply new curtains for the town house without following proper procedures and the council paid her.
On the second count, Mr Mhene said some time in March last year, Mandeya invited tenders for catering services and about four companies provided their quotations.
The court heard that Mandeya, who preferred one of the four companies, Irene’s Kitchen inflated the figures on the other three bids and proceeded to award the tender to her preferred company without involving the council procurement management unit.
Mandeya also went to the housing department in December 2017 and ordered the officials in the department to allocate her a stand (number 155 in Kambasha), which was adjacent to her official stand (Number 156).
She signed a lease agreement but never paid money for the stand as stipulated in the lease.
The local authority was prejudiced of over $4000. The court heard that Mandeya also used her position to directly procure and order the installation of a solar system from Nerenchia Power Rite company for the town house and used the same company to install a solar power system at her house.
It is the state’s case that Gokwe Town council paid $325 435 for the services but could have saved a huge chunk of that amount of money if proper procedures had been followed.