Tourism boss acquitted on lawyer assault charge; court says allegations fabricated

Spread This News

By Court Reporter

ZIMBABWE Tourism Authority (ZTA) chief executive Karikoga Kaseke was Wednesday found not guilty of assaulting and insulting a Harare lawyer.

Kaseke walked out of court a free man after Harare magistrate Nyasha Vhitorini ruled that there was an issue of bad blood between him and complainant Philipa Magnify Philips.

The court also said that witness’s testimonies were inconsistent with the allegations making it difficult to believe the testimonies.

“Witnesses statements were not coherent and they all told court different narratives rendering allegations a fabrication,” ruled the magistrate.

Kaseke was acquitted at the close of State’s case after a successful application by his lawyer Nomsa Sabarauta who argued that the allegations were fabricated to tarnish her client’s image.

Kaseke had insisted that he never laid his hand on Philips and further argued that he was the victim.

He also said the lawyer fabricated charges against him because she was linked to the former family of former president Robert Mugabe.

Mugabe’s wife, Grace, had reportedly targeted Kaseke for supporting eventual successor Emmerson Mnangagwa.

Complainant Philips had told court Kaseke was a violent person adding that this was common knowledge as he was always in the media over related issues.

Kaseke is a second respondent in matter involving his son’s road accident with Philips’ client Freedom Mazirire.

Mazirire is suing Kaseke for $18,000 in damages following the accident.

According to Philips, the parties held a pre-trial conference at the High Court where the judge ruled in favour of her client and advised Kaseke to settle as his prospects for success at trial were slim.

Philips said this did not go down with Kaseke who approached her client after the meeting telling him that his lawyer was misleading him.

This triggered the dispute which ended with Kaseke allegedly poking Philips and calling her a prostitute.

Crispen Chikafu prosecuted.