Zimra officer on the run

Crime Reporter

POLICE have launched a manhunt for a Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) officer Sekelwe Maphosa who is part of a gang that defrauded the authority of millions of dollars in a fraudulent vehicle clearance scandal at Plumtree Border Post.

Two Zimra officers, Teeklar Ndlovu (55) and Norest Ushe (29), have since been arrested for fraudulently clearing 50 vehicles without charging import duty.

Maphosa is still at large and the police are now looking for her.

National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi has appealed to people with information on Maphosa’s whereabouts to assist the police and ensure she faces justice.

“Police in Plumtree are keen to interview Sekelwe Maphosa in connection with a case of fraud involving clearance of vehicles into the country at the Plumtree Border Post,” he said.

“Her last known address is Zimra Staff Houses, Plumtree. Anyone with information can report at the nearest police station.”

Last week, Ushe was arrested on charges of defrauding his employer of over US$430 000 and over $1,4 million and has since appeared before Bulawayo magistrate Mr Shepherd Mjanja.

The court was told that in May 2017, Ushe was working at a private import section responsible for clearance of private goods before he was changed to a section where he was responsible for scanning goods.

It is alleged that in February this year, while working at private imports section, he was issued with an SAP password which enabled him to capture, view and print customs clearance certificates in the Zimra system.

Ushe allegedly fraudulently entered 50 vehicles into the Zimra system and the authority lost potential revenue in the form of unpaid duty amounting to US$432 767,54 for 39 vehicles and $1 469 791,58 for 11 vehicles.

It is alleged that when the anomaly was discovered, Ushe was found in possession of fake customs clearance certificates and customs clearance certificate print outs.

Five motor vehicles were also recovered and Ushe was allegedly found in possession of a Zimra date stamp allegedly used in the commission of the crime.

Ushe is alleged to have forged customs clearance certificates, endorsed them with used serial numbers.