Grace Mugabe PhD : UZ Vice-Chancellor Levi Nyagura out on bail

UNIVERSITY of Zimbabwe Vice-Chancellor Professor Levi Nyagura — arrested for allegedly illegally awarding former First Lady Grace Mugabe a PhD — was yesterday granted US$200 bail.

The bail conditions include surrendering his passport, residing at his stated Borrowdale, Harare address and not interfering with State witnesses Professor Rudo Gaidzanwa and Drs Julius Museveni, Watch Ruparanganda and Sadomba. He is expected back in court on 5 March 2018.

Prof Nyagura was charged with abuse of office when he appeared before Harare magistrate Mrs Tilda Mazhande — an allegation he refuted. Through lawyer a Mr Muriri, he challenged his placement on remand, arguing that “the facts alleged, assuming they are correct, do not disclose the offence charged or any competent charge that would arise from provisions of Section 174 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act”.

The Section reads, in part: “If a public officer, in the exercise of his or her functions as such, intentionally does anything that is contrary to or inconsistent with his or her duty as a public officer; or (b) omits to do anything which it is his or her duty as a public officer to do; for the purpose of showing favour or disfavour to any person, he or she shall be guilty of criminal abuse of duty as a public officer and liable to a fine not exceeding level thirteen or imprisonment for a period not exceeding fifteen years or both.”

On Friday, the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission arrested Prof Nyagura for allegedly awarding Mrs Mugabe a PhD without university council and senate committee approval. Mrs Mugabe was supervised by Professor Claude Mararike.