BY CHARLES LAITON
A LEBANESE national, who was in July this year slapped with a $1,475 million default judgment after failing to defend a lawsuit filed against him by a local businessman, Ratai Abass Ahmed, has now filed a court application for rescission of judgment.
Jamal Joseph Ahmed, who is also embroiled in a $1,4m diamond ring wrangle with First Lady Grace Mugabe, said judgment was entered against him and in favour of Ratai because he did not respond to the summons since the court papers were not served on him, but to one of the houses seized by Grace.
He filed the court application seeking rescission of the judgment on September 5 this year, more than a month after High Court judge Justice Lavender Makoni granted Ratai an order on July 24, 2017.
In his founding affidavit, Jamal said he would have defended the lawsuit if he had been served with the court papers.
“A perusal of the record even shows that the Sheriff served a copy of the summons by affixing in a letter box at Number 18 Cambridge Road, Avondale, Harare.I no longer use those premises due to the fact that they had been unlawfully occupied by agencies representing the First Lady in a dispute I have with her, where I sold her a ring for
$1 100 000 and she is refusing to collect the same,” he said.
“It is, therefore, clear that I was not in wilful default and, certainly, would have defended the case successfully.”
Jamal is currently out of the country and his three upmarket properties were allegedly seized by Grace and her son, Russell Goreraza, after a diamond ring deal fell through.
However, Grace has since claimed the seizure was a police issue and had nothing to do with her.
Ratai filed a chamber application for default judgment on June 28 this year seeking to recover his money, which he allegedly advanced to Jamal as a personal loan 10 years ago.
Ratai had issued summons against Jamal on May 5 this year and the latter failed to respond, prompting his business partner to apply for a default judgment, which was granted by Justice Makoni.
Ratai claims Jamal was supposed to have repaid him by February 2009.