HARARE – Harare City council officials who are in court for ordering the demolition of a city showroom allegedly built from a fraudulent plan by a private developer, are now seeking discharge.
They face malicious damage to property charges relating to the structure that was built in Harare’s Borrowdale suburb by local property developer George Katsimberis.
The state has closed its case against the Zvenyika Chawatama, Samuel Nyabeze, Lasten Taonezvi and Pokugara properties representative Marlone Ndebele and former Pokugara Properties general manager Michael Van Blerk.
After close of the state case, the accused told magistrate Florence Chakanyuka that they intended to file their application for discharge on February 27.
Appearing for the State, Zivanayi Macharaga said he will file his response by March 3.
He called two witnesses in the matter, George Katsimberis and Roy Nyabvure.
The magistrate is expected to hand down her ruling on the application for discharge on March 16.
The group landed in the dock after destroying a showroom that was illegally built by Katsimberis following a joint venture agreement with Pokugara properties.
In a turn of events, the building was condemned after it was discovered that the plan was fraudulent and the materials used were not recommended.
This resulted in a fallout between Katsimberis and his former business partner and owner of Pokugara, Kern Sharpe with the subsequent legal battle.