Minister ordered out of lodgings

Hon Simon Musanhu

Hon Simon Musanhu

Fidelis Munyoro Chief Court Reporter
The High Court has ordered Environment, Water and Climate Deputy Minister Engineer Simon Musanhu to vacate the premises he is renting after his appeal to remain in occupation of the property was rejected.
Eng Musanhu, owner of Craster Kitchens (Pvt) Ltd that operates at Number 27 Craster Road, Southerton, was also ordered to pay more than US$12 000 in holding over damages for remaining in occupation of the property following the cancellation of the lease agreement.

The deputy minister signed a two-year lease agreement with BGS Properties (Pvt) Ltd commencing on January 2013 to December 31, 2015.

He failed to pay rent in terms of the agreement, resulting in the landlord cancelling the lease agreement in February this year.

After the cancellation of the agreement, BGS, through their lawyer Mr Davison Kanokanga, sued Eng Musanhu at the Magistrates’ Civil Court, before he rushed to settle the arrears.

He remained in occupation of the property despite the agreement having been cancelled, arguing that he had made improvements.
The court dismissed his contention and ordered him to vacate the property.

Through his lawyers Chakanyuka and Associates, Eng Musanhu then appealed at the High Court against the lower court’s ruling. He also applied for a stay for execution pending the determination of the appeal.

Eng Musanhu argued that the lower court was wrong in ordering his eviction because he had paid the arrears in full on May 27 this year, two months after the lease had been cancelled in February.

He said he wanted to remain in occupation of the premises without paying anything to recover the costs he incurred in sprucing up the property.

Eng Musanhu argued that the lower court should have waited for the commercial rent board to make a determination of the dispute.

However, the rent board had refused to hear the matter on the basis that the parties had signed the lease agreement and that it was pending before the courts.

But Mr Kanokanga argued that Eng Musanhu breached the contract after he failed to honour his obligation to pay rent, which prompted the cancellation of the lease agreement.

He said Eng Musanhu only paid the arrears after the lease agreement was cancelled and the legal process having been instituted against him.

Mr Kanokanga further argued that in terms of the lease agreement, if Eng Musanhu wanted to make improvements, he would do so at his own costs and expenses with the consent of the landlord.

The High Court accepted arguments by Mr Kanokanga and ruled in favour of BGS, paving way for Eng Musanhu’s eviction.


Pin It
  • dan

    I miss that place since I moved out of Harare.

  • Mimi

    Hats off to the High Court for upholding a rather fair Judgement in this case. It is obvious that the Hon member was trying to take advantange and use his post for the Courts to favour him. Shame on him. If he had the monies why would he have waited to settle paying his rentals till BGS the Landlord had made legal proceedings against him. This landmark ruling should be a warning to those that rent people’s properties and do not want to pay as their agreements. A Lessee should always ensure that there is harmony between them and the owners of the properties where one is lodging. After all people try to have their properties rented out so that they get rewards for their investments. It is all about sacrifices, most Landlords choose to stay at places they can afford to pay inorder that they make ends meet. Am impressed by this ruling.

  • tinofungawo

    Vajaira zvemahara which is why they have ordered workers in Chitungwiza to continue working for free while the ministers are making money and using their positions to take from others without paying their dues.

    Why am I coopting him in the Chitungwiza saga? Because if these ministers had a heart they would have collectively decided that workers have a right to strike because they have been grossly abused and would have put pressure on council to pay up rather than keeping silent when Goche is threatening workers with arrest. These orders cannot be issued without others not knowing what is happening and even if they had been unaware, their silence tells the story of their way of thinking.