HARARE – Radio and TV personality Tichafa Augustine Matambanadzo — popularly known as Tich Mataz — was yesterday dragged before the courts for allegedly smuggling clothes and evading $500 duty.
The 48-year-old —accused of contravening Section 182 of the Excise and Control Act — appeared before Harare magistrate Lazini Ncube facing smuggling charges.
He was released on $100 bail and ordered to surrender his passport, as part of bail conditions.
The “Midas Touch”, as he is also known, will be back in court on February 27.
The complainant is the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra), Harare International Airport (HIA) branch, represented by Munyaradzi Mhanda.
The court heard that at around 10am on January 7 this year, Matambanadzo arrived at HIA aboard Kenya Airways from China.
The prominent Master of Ceremonies (MC) and DJ-cum-businessman allegedly moved his luggage from the carousel to the Green Route and was stopped by one Patrick Mukangamwi, who asked him to go through the Red Route.
The Green Route is used by travellers who are not carrying any dutiable or restricted goods, meaning goods that are not covered by the traveller’s and tourist rebates.
If the goods being carried by a traveller do not qualify under the rebates, then the traveller should use the Red Route.
Matambanadzo was handed over to Mhanda before he filled in a declaration form.
It was alleged that Mhanda went through Matambanadzo’s stuff and realised that he had several suits, shoes and track bottoms whose duty was not paid for.
The court heard that Mhanda calculated the duty for the respective items and it came to $538.
When Mhanda went to capture the information in their system, Matambanadzo allegedly made off without paying the duty.
“By so doing the accused person deprived Zimra Harare Airport of $538,75 revenue and had no right to act in that manner,” the State outline said.