from MARCUS MUSHONGA in Harare, Zimbabwe
HARARE – THE Zimbabwean High Court has granted permission to the beleaguered former minister, Ignatious Chombo, to seek treatment in neighbouring South Africa.
High Court judge, Moses Foroma, ordered the government to hand the ailing ex-minister his travel document that was seized at the main airport in Harare last year as he attempted to travel.
Chombo (67) is reportedly suffering cancer.
The government must hand him his passport by Tuesday (March 3).
He is to return to court on March 16.
“The Clerk of Court, Harare Magistrates Court is ordered to immediately release the applicant’s passport as aforesaid,” said Judge Foroma.
Chombo is facing some corruption charges.
He is one of the so-called criminals the military said it was targeting when it overthrew then-president, Robert Mugabe (now late), in late 2017.
Chombo was one of Mugabe’s most trusted lieutenants in the latter’s 37-year reign.
He is formerly the minister of finance and also led the home affairs ministry, among other cabinet posts.
His seeking treatment in South Africa highlights the collapse of Zimbabwe’s once-revered health sector.
The elite in Zimbabwe has in recent years sought medical treatment in South Africa, leaving the poor majority to contend with health centres lacking basics such as drugs and beset by striking doctors.
Mugabe died in Singapore where he was undergoing treatment, reportedly for cancer.
He and his government are accused of wrecking the Southern African country through corruption and ill-advised policies.
– CAJ News