GUTU - A Gutu man will rue the day he evaded the meter reading and connected electricity directly to his house after he was slapped with a 16 months jail-term recently.
Tiki Muranda (30) from Chatsworth was convicted and sentenced for contravening Section 60 A (1) (a) of the Electricity Act Chapter 13:19 (Abstract or divert any electric current or causing any electric current to be abstracted or diverted.)
The court heard that Muranda unlawfully connected electricity at 16 Makaure Location, Chatsworth, between May 18, 2016 and October 04, 2016, when a Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Auithourity (ZESA) loss control officer, Joseph Nekati discovered the connection whilst carrying spot checks leading to his arrest.
Nekati asked Muranda's wife, Nomatter Mabhande to check the meter in the house. When he entered the house, the bulb was lit which was an indication that there was electricity in the house. He further checked the customer information unity (C.I.U) and it showed 0000 meaning there were no units purchased.
A printout was obtained which indicated that the accused had last purchased 28,3 units on May 18 for $5, the total value prejudiced is US$636
Muranda pleaded guilty before Gutu Resident Magistrate Edwin Marecha and begged for mercy saying that he had lost his job and was finding it difficult to find any money to pay electricity bill.
"I am sorry your worship, if you may forgive me and give me time to find a job and pay the bill. I am not employed and I just heard people discussing how a cable can be used to evade the meter recording electricity consumption. I did it out of desperation and it worked. I have 4 children and a wife, I am also taking care of my sick mother," pleaded Muranda.
Marecha sentenced Muranda to 16 months of which four months were suspended on condition that he pays $300 fine. The other six months were suspended on condition that he pays restitution totaling $636 before November 2016, while the remaining six months were again suspended on condition that Muranda does not commit a similar offense for the next one year. Millicent Azangwe prosecuted.news