Minister in contempt of court over land

Minister Kasukuwere

Minister Kasukuwere

Zvamaida Murwira Senior Reporter
Local Government, Public Works and National Housing Minister Saviour Kasukuwere has been taken to court for contempt together with the Urban Development Corporation (Udcorp) after they sub-divided a contested piece of land in Pomona into residential stands which they sold.

Augur Investments wants Minister Kasukuwere and Udcorp chief executive officer Mr Bright Mudzvova to be held in contempt of a High Court order after they were interdicted from sub-dividing and selling Stand 654 of Pomona Township, Harare, measuring 250 hectares.

In the court interdict, Augur Investments cited the respondents as Minister Kasukuwere (first), Harare City Council (second), Udcorp (third) and XGMA (fifth).

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High Court judge Justice Clement Phiri last December ordered that Chinese company XGMA, the Local Government Ministry and Udcorp stop sub-dividing and selling the land which Augur lawfully received from Harare City Council as part of the payment for construction of Joshua Nkomo Expressway (Airport Road) and other various projects it carried out for the local authority under a written agreement.

Minister Kasukuwere was once quoted in the media claiming that the deals, which were concluded during his predecessor Dr Ignatius Chombo’s era, were irregularly done and would launch an investigation.

Lawyers representing Augur Investments, Chinawa Law Chambers, yesterday filed court papers to have Mr Mudzvova held to be in contempt of court for continuing to interfere with its possession of the property as it had continued to sell land to unsuspecting residents.

“Despite the clear, unequivocal and unambiguous terms of the order granted, the respondents exhibited blatant disregard and contempt of this Honourable Court in that they have continued to carry out the very same acts complained of and ordered against by this Honourable Court,” reads the papers filed by Augur Investments director, Mr Mike Van Blerk.

Mr Blerk said Udcorp attempted to sell land to Mr Mandla Ndebele where he was called on April 6 2017 to come to their offices to discuss sale transaction.

Mr Ndebele, according to court papers, paid $25 as an administration fee and was taken by Udcorp officials on April 10, 2017 to view the stand before he was advised by security at the site that the property belonged to Augur Investments.

“The respondents have demonstrated a brazen indifference to the authority of this Honourable Court by disregarding the order of this Court,” reads the court papers.

“I am advised that the crime of contempt of court is committed intentionally and in relation to administration of justice in the courts. The object of proceedings for contempt is to punish disobedience, so as to enforce an order of court and in particular, orders to do so or abstain from doing a particular act, like the present order.”

Augur Investments said failure by Udcorp to comply with the order would render it without remedy.

“It is, therefore, clear that the respondents, unless the Court descends heavily upon them, will continue to undermine the authority of this Honourable Court by disclaiming and disregarding its orders, thereby jeorpadising the integrity of this court in the eyes of the litigating public,” said Mr Blerk.

The Ministry is appealing the decision in the Supreme Court on the grounds that Augur did not complete Airport Road project.

In an opposing affidavit, the ministry’s permanent secretary Engineer George Mlilo, said Government had repossessed the land because Augur Investments did not finish one of the jobs, a road construction project eventually taken over by the Zimbawe National Roads Administration.

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  • Mister Arcadia PhD.

    Augur Investments,is Chombo’s company ,the same company that was involved in the overpriced Airport Road ? Chombo is head of police kkkkkkkk,nyaya idzi so?

    • Sezai the truth teller

      this Mandla Ndebele is a guy who works at augur investments. i doubt anything he says is even true. come on the guy will say anything to protect his salary.

  • Tapfuma

    Tip of the iceberg, oft repeated with other equally corrupt ministers. Unfortunately, with questionable impartiality and independence allowed to the judiciary, police and anti-corruption commission, who are seemingly stymied by permanently waiting for the go-ahead from President Mugabe to tackle high profile cases, even with incontrovertible evidence shoved under the royal nose?
    However, the Supreme Office appears to lack the courage or is unwilling to tackle top Comrades guilty of flouting the law, and often appears to shield chosen protégés from lawful consequences uniquely to further personal political advantages and patronage.
    The big question everyone poses is, what must be done to remove deliberate delays and interference preventing independent justice to be seen and executed in this nation, especially where Mugabe’s chosen big-fish acolytes are concerned?

  • Mela

    so whats his time in school got to do with all this?

  • zimbotry

    But how is it the First Lady can take over land in defience of a Court order then and nothing is said?