Zvikomborero Parafini 

THE trial of Ivy Kombo and her husband Admire Kasi, who are accused of acquiring conversion certificates without writing conversion examinations, has been delayed once again over a disputed email extract.

Edith Mandiyanike from Fidelity Printers testified that she received an email from Huggins Duri, former executive secretary for the Council for Legal Education, listing the names of students whose certificates were to be printed, including Kombo and Kasi.

The State sought to tender the email extract for the second time.

But the trio’s lawyers objected, arguing that it would be a miscarriage of justice and that the State had a duty to prove the email’s authenticity before it was accepted as an exhibit.

The presiding magistrate will make a ruling on Thursday, with the trial resuming on March 4.

“I received an email with a list of students whose certificates were to be printed and Kombo and Kasi’s names were there.

“The email was instructing me to print the certificates of the students on the list which I did,” said Mandiyanike.

Asked by prosecutor Anesu Chirenje whether there was any other form of communication besides the email, Mandiyanike said:

“All communications were done through email and we would call them afterwards that the certificates were ready for collection.”

Chirenje then applied to tender the email extract for the second time, but Kombo and Kasi’s lawyers objected.

“We are objecting to the document that the State wants to utilise in this matter through this witness.

“The court has pronounced itself with regards to the production of that document and it’s very disturbing that probably the State believes that they are cousins of the court and whatever they say must be accepted as the gospel truth.

“The document wasn’t provided to the accused persons on the commencement of the trial. 

“The State seeks to allege that they served us in the early days of this matter, however, this document wasn’t there.

“Chirenje wrote a letter last week to us on February 13 attaching this letter alleging that it was part of a statement relating to Edith Mandiyanike and we were served with the statement which had an annexure which is not this email.

“He’s attempting to smuggle the email into the record, but it’s not fair to the accused persons because we have already prepared their defence outline and cross examined witnesses without the benefit of the said email,” said the lawyers.

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