Former Bulawayo deputy mayor Gift Banda arrested over lease granted to daughter

Gift Banda

BULAWAYO – Njube-Lobengula MP Gift Banda (MDC) appeared in court on Thursday charged with corruption over a 3,82-heactare stand leased to a company owned by his daughter while he was Bulawayo’s deputy mayor.

The stand, between 2nd and 4th Avenue along Samuel Parirenyatwa Street, was allocated to a company called Entertainment Headquarters for the construction of a social club.

Prosecutors say at the time the lease agreement was signed, Entertainment Headquarters was “not yet registered with the Registrar of Companies.”

Banda, who was charged with criminal abuse of duty as a public officer or alternatively fraud, was remanded to February 1 on $100 bail by Bulawayo magistrate Adelaide Mbeure.

Prosecutor Nkathazo Dlodlo said between January 2014 and December 2015, then deputy mayor Banda used his influence in the Town, Lands and Planning Committee to have a lease agreement for stand number 187964 Bulawayo Township corruptly processed.

Entertainment Headquarters, the company awarded the lease, was registered much later with its directors listed as Banda’s daughter and Saimon Mambazo. – ZimLive