Problems are mounting for organisers of Alick Macheso’s Chitungwiza Aquatic Complex show that was held last Friday. While show promoter Chris Musabayane is nursing injuries sustained when he fell into an empty swimming pool during the show in unclear circumstances, his organising partner Jatiel Machanja has been brought to court for failing to pay police officers that provided security at the event.
Details of how Musabayane fell into the swimming pool are sketchy, but sources say the incident could be linked to confusion in the organising team after the show flopped. The sources say some musicians that performed at the show are still to be paid.
Machanja, who is Macheso’s ex-manager, was part of the organising team and assigned to engage police officers for security. He appeared before Chitungwiza magistrate Jessy Kufa on Monday to answer to charges of making off without payment after failing to pay $454 to the police.
The complainant in this matter is Constable Paul Dera of 51 Mazari Street, New Mabvuku who is stationed at Zengeza Police Station. Allegations are that on December 8 at around 9am Machanja went to Zengeza Police Station requesting security services from the police.
Machanja was charged $554 but negotiated the figure down to $454 and signed an agreement with the officers. Machanja allegedly promised to pay at around midnight on the day of the show since the event was scheduled to start at around 9pm on Friday.
The court heard that Dera went to the venue on Friday with five other officers including Constables Nhundu, Sasanhira, Chimhaka, Mabika and Chiinze for the required service. Dera is said to have approached Machanja on Saturday at around 12.30am asking for payment as agreed upon.
The court heard that Machanja promised to pay after an hour. After the agreed time lapsed, Machanja allegedly failed to honour his word while the officers continued to man the premises until 5am.
Dera went to see Machanja for the money after the show, but he failed to pay. Machanja denied the charges and was remanded out of custody to December 21 on $50 bail. Innocent Tizirai prosecuted.