ZIMBABWE Tourism Authority (ZTA) boss Mr Karikoga Kaseke has been ordered to pay $225 by a Bulawayo court for the upkeep of his nine-year-old son whom he sired with a Bulawayo woman.
The ruling by Bulawayo magistrate Ms Sharon Rosemani followed a legal wrangle between Ms Charlotte Dlakama (34) and Mr Kaseke over the maintenance and upkeep of their son.
In papers before the court, Mr Kaseke of Mt Pleasant in Harare, was cited as a respondent, while Ms Dlakama is the applicant.
Ms Dlakama of Nketa 6 suburb sought an order directing Mr Kaseke to pay her $650 a month for the upkeep of their son.
Ms Rosemani ruled that Mr Kaseke should pay $225 after the ZTA boss argued that he was also taking care of six other children.
Two of the children are at university, while the other two are in secondary school.
The remaining two are attending primary school.
“Their monthly needs are in excess of $1 500, including among others transport, food,” said Mr Kaseke. “The amount of $100 per month is sufficient to cater for the minor child’s maintenance needs.”
Ms Rosemani ordered the ZTA boss to directly pay the school fees for his son in addition to the money for the boy’s upkeep.
He was also ordered to buy three sets of complete school uniforms for his son per year until he finishes schooling.
“The respondent should deposit $225 into the applicant’s bank account for the child’s upkeep until the child turns 18,” ruled Ms Rosemani.
Mr Kaseke, in his opposing papers, said problems started when Ms Dlakama decided to approach the court.
“The parties were enjoying having a love relationship, but all hell broke loose when the applicant decided to approach this honourable court for an order of maintenance on November 28, 2017,” said Mr Kaseke.
“The applicant does not dispute his obligation to maintain the child, but the only dispute relates to her monetary claim, which I cannot afford because I have other children that I am maintaining together with my wife.”
Mr Kaseke argued that although he is gainfully employed he had no additional source of income.
“I earn a net salary of $3 260 and I have no additional source of income,” he said. “I have burdensome obligations, which virtually masticate the entire salary at the moment such that I have to rely on support from my wife.”
Mr Kaseke said he discovered that there was another court order at the Harare magistrate’s court directing him to pay $1 500 for maintenance under case number M327/09.
The arrears accumulated in excess of $50 000.
“Other than the obligations arising from the court order thereof, I have to cater for my other children’s welfare and needs,” he said. “I have other children who entirely depend on me.”
Mr Kaseke argued that since Ms Dlakama raked in between $200 and $300 from her small business, she had no basis to claim spousal maintenance against him.