FORMER Cabinet minister Prisca Mupfumira was yesterday allowed to travel to the United Kingdom to visit her ailing brother after the court granted her application for temporary release of her passport and relaxation of bail conditions.
Mupfumira, in her application done on her behalf by lawyer Mr Admire Rubaya, Mupfumira indicated that she intends to travel to the UK on December 1 and return on January 8 next year.
She also committed her sister’s Westgate house as surety for the release of her passport.
“She intends to travel to the United Kingdom to attend to an ill brother and ascertain his problems, and consider relocating to Zimbabwe. She was granted leave of absence from Parliament from December 1 to January 8, 2022 by president of the Senate.
“She is prepared to add her sister Lillian Chimukumbete’s property as surety that she will return to court,” he said.
Mr Rubaya told the court that Mupfumira will not run away from her trials on corruption-related charges since she wants to clear her name.
The State led by Mr Whisper Mabhaudi and Mr Loveit Masuku opposed the application saying Mupfumira might not return to court since her trials are at an advanced stage.
Mr Mabhaudi told the court that the State had led five out of six witnesses in one of the cases, which might induce her not to return from the UK. He said there was need for additional surety to ensure that Mupfumira returns to court.
Harare regional magistrate Mr Stanford Mambanje granted Mupfumira application saying the additional surety she pledged showed that they wanted to attend to the welfare of fellow family members.
Mr Mambanje said it also showed that Mupfumira was not travelling for leisure but to attend to a family problem. He also noted that Mupfumira was once given back her passport and returned for her trial.
Mupfumira is expected to return to court on January 27 for her trial where she is jointly charged with Barnabas Matongera on criminal abuse of office.