Former Health and Child Care Minister David Parirenyatwa yesterday successfully made an application for the temporary release of his passport, saying he wants to attend a Hospice Society for Aids in Africa meeting to be held in Ghana.
Parirenyatwa, through his lawyer Mr James Makiya, told the court that it was mandatory that he attends the meeting as he is the vice president of the society.
He also applied for trial postponement and the temporary suspension of bail conditions while he is attending the meeting.
The State did not oppose and Harare magistrate Ms Bianca Makwande granted the application.
The passport was released from yesterday until December 24.
Parirenyatwa is being accused of abusing his position as a public officer and directing NatPharm board chairperson Dr George Washaya to terminate the contract of Ms Flora Sifeku as managing director, allegedly showing favour for Mr Newman Madzikwa, who had once been sacked from the pharmaceutical company for reportedly selling donated drugs.
At the time he was fired in September 2009, Mr Madzikwa was NatPharm's Masvingo branch manager.
The indictment also revealed that Parirenyatwa had indicated that he required Ms Sifeku's services at the ministry's head office for an indefinite period.
The board, it is alleged, complied with the former minister's directive and gave Ms Sifeku and Mr Madzikwa six months contracts each as managing directors effective June 1 to November 30 this year.
It is alleged that Parirenyatwa's conduct created double dipping on NatPharm funds as the company was paying two salaries towards the managing director's position, thereby prejudicing it of a total of $30 006.
The State further alleges that Parirenyatwa's actions were prejudicial to the good administration of NatPharm and the Ministry of Health and Child Care.