Zimbabwe: Dongo's Imposter Appears in Court

25 January 2021

A-23-year-old Harare man last week admitted to duping various people using an Ecocash number registered in musician Trevor Dongo's name and asking for sexual favours from his female Facebook followers.

Praise Dzveta of Churu Farm in Glen View, who was also found in possession of stolen military garb upon arrest, admitted to defrauding unsuspecting people using the Ecocash number registered in Dongo's name, but denied asking for sexual favours from female fans while passing himself off as the urban grooves artiste.

During his bail application heard before Harare magistrate Mr Sheunesu Matova, Dzveta said: "It is true that I was using his (Dongo) name, but I did not get much money. Some people would send me data bundles while others would buy me airtime.

"I never asked for sexual favours from anyone as I do not have a Facebook account."

The State led by Mr Moses Mapanga opposed granting of bail to Dzveta, saying police were yet to ascertain his identity, as he was using four names upon arrest.

Mr Mapanga called the investigating officer in the matter, Detective Vincent Chikerema, to testify.

Said Det Chikerema: "He is of no fixed abode and we are yet to ascertain his real identity as four names came to the fore upon his arrest. He is using other names; Trevor Dongo, Talent Dongo and Vincent Fungai Nyamukungwa.

"Upon his arrest, we found him in possession of an ID belonging to Nyamukungwa, who is a soldier based at Inkomo (Barracks). Nyamukungwa told us that the ID was part of his belongings, including the camouflage that was stolen. There are lot of women who said they were sexually violated by the accused and they are willing to testify against him.

"Our fears are that once he is released, he will evade the jurisdiction of the court."

Det Chikerema said Dzveta stayed at an informal settlement where there were no formal addresses, making it difficult to trace once granted bail.

Dzveta, in his bail application, told the court that he was staying at his sister's place, where he doubled as a caretaker.

He said he will not flee as he was the one looking after the properties at that place.

Dzveta added he has an ailing mother who needs financial assistance.

In his ruling, Mr Matova said Dzveta had admitted to some of the charges, but was likely to abscond once granted bail.

He said since Dzveta stayed in an informal settlement at Churu Farm, it would be difficult for police to find him in the event he evaded trial.

Mr Matova thus denied him bail and ordered him to return to court on March 1.

The State had it that sometime last year, Dongo discovered there was an imposter who had registered an Ecocash account, 0782324095, using his name.

He also realised that the person was asking for money from various people and sought sexual favours from various women. Dongo approached Econet to have the account blocked.

Upon realising that the account was no longer functional, Dzveta registered another number -- 0783923456 -- on Ecocash in Dongo's name.

He continued duping people using the new account until the matter was taken to police, leading to his arrest.

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