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Jailed Independent End Time Message leader Robert Martin Gumbura, who had bodyguards and a secretary in prison, allegedly smuggled 960 bricks of cigarettes into Chikurubi Maximum Security Prison, the court heard yesterday.
During cross-examination, a State witness Claudius Mutizwa told the court that Gumbura had a large corner, a base where he stayed with his bodyguards and a secretary, David Mwanjira.
“Gumbura’s secretary used to record everything that he received,” said Mutizwa.
Asked by Gumbura’s lawyer Mr Tapson Dzvetero where the records where, Mutizwa said they were taken by prison officers.
“Gumbura received 960 bricks of cigarettes and four boxes of pizza from his wives,” said Mutizwa.
“I was friends with Gumbura’s secretary Mwanjira and sometimes I would help him record and keep the cigarettes.
“I used to work in the prison library and at one point I kept three sacks of cigarettes for Gumbura. On February 13, Gumbura asked me if I was happy with the type of food we were getting before saying Zimbabweans are foolish and have no guts.”
Gumbura is jointly charged with Blessing Chauke (25), Lucky Mhungu (38), Taurai Dodzo (47), Thomas Chacha (37), Thulani Chizema (32), Jacob Sibanda (28) and, Elijah Vhumbunu (38), and an armed robber, Lucky Matambanadzo (39).
The nine are accused of masterminding a foiled jailbreak at Chikurubi Maximum Security Prison.
They are facing charges of attempting to escape from lawful custody, incitement in aggravating circumstances or alternatively conspiracy in aggravating circumstances for malicious damage to property.
Prosecuting, Mr Michael Reza alleged that during the morning of February 13 in B Hall, Gumbura allegedly incited other inmates to protest the type of food they were being served.
With the intention to escape, Chauke, Matambanadzo, Mhungu, Dodzo, Chacha, Sibanda, Vhumbunu, Chizema and three other inmates who are now deceased, influenced inmates to reject the porridge which had no sugar, it is alleged.
Violence erupted, with prisoners vandalising property whose value was estimated at US$450 000.by Fungai Lupande. Source: the herald