By Mary Taruvinga
JAILED former Energy minister Samuel Undenge has approached the High Court seeking release on bail.
This was after the courts recently upheld an earlier two and half years he was given following his conviction on corruption charges.
Undenge was sent to jail after losing an appeal against both conviction and sentence by Harare magistrate Hosea Mujaya who found him guilty back in 2018.
The ex-minister, who became the first of late former President Robert Mugabe’s allies to be jailed for corruption, insists he is not guilty.
Undenge is accused of having favoured former Zanu PF legislator, Psychology Maziwisa and former ZBC news anchor, Oscar Pambuka who owns Fruitful Communications, with a consultancy deal which saw the Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC) losing $12 000.
Undenge still blames the two.
“The letter that applicant (Undenge) signed was motivated by Mazivisa, Pambuka and Fruitful Communications who were committing fraud,” reads the application.
“The appeal court acknowledged this fact. This therefore completely destroyed the Applicant’s guilty state of mind as he was himself being conned and was a victim of crime.
“In regard to sentence, the Court erred in ignoring that a staggering four years’ imprisonment imposed on Applicant was for merely signing a letter that was dictated to him.
“He stood to benefit nothing and indeed benefited nothing. Further the prejudice was a paltry $12 650.
“To uphold the conviction of the Applicant in the circumstances as the Court did was a serious travesty of justice.”
Undenge, after his 2018 conviction, had successfully sought bail pending appeal and conviction but his freedom bid was dismissed by the High Court early this month.
Last Friday, senior regional magistrate Trynos Utahwashe committed him back to prison at a time he had appealed against the High Court’s decision.
If the application succeeds Undenge has offered to deposit $10 000, report once a week on Fridays at Borrowdale Police Station, continue to reside at House 729 Glen Helen Way, Glen Lorne, Harare, surrender his passport and title deeds already held by the court.
The matter is yet to be heard.