Zifa property wrangle far from over

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The dispute over the control of Zifa (Pvt) Ltd’s Kensington property, which was sold at an auction by the sheriff of the High Court to a local firm, Max Haivo Electrical and Hardware (Pvt) Ltd, is far from over after the firm this week approached the High Court, seeking an order barring the sheriff from reversing the sale.

BY CHARLES LAITON

The property was put on auction last year, when local company, LED Travel and Tours (Pvt) Ltd, obtained a default judgment against Zifa over a $300 000 debt.

But, as events unfolded it later turned out that the attached property, which had been sold to Max Haivo Electrical and Hardware for $61 000, did not belong to the Zifa, but to Zifa (Pvt) Ltd instead.

Sometime in August 28 this year, sheriff Macduff Madega approached the court seeking an order to confirm that the auctioned property did not belong to Zifa, but in his application he did not cite the property buyer, as an interested party.

“The application is for the rescission of the order that was granted under case number HC7971/17, which order was granted by the judge in chambers in my absence, when it had the effect of reversing the rights and interest I had acquired in the property,” Max Haivo Electrical and Hardware director, Maxwell Ndudzo said in his founding affidavit.

“On May 24, 2017, the sheriff confirmed in writing the applicant (Max Haivo Electrical), as the purchaser of the property, as required by the rules of this court and applicant and first respondent (sheriff) signed an agreement of sale.

“Applicant paid the full purchase price ($61 000) and has since taken occupation after payment of the full purchase price to the first respondent and in terms of the agreement of sale.”

Ndudzo said while he was in the process of obtaining title for the property, he discovered that the property, according to the Registrar of Deeds, was transferred to, and was now registered in Olive Touch Investment’s name under deed of transfer 1463/17 and dated April 4, 2017.

“I have since made a court application seeking an order setting aside the transfer of the property into the third respondent (Olive Touch). The transfer of the property to third respondent is in my view an illegal and diversionary alienation of the property meant to defeat the first respondent’s attachment and sale in execution,” he said.

“I have cared to do some searches at the Companies’ Offices to get more information about the third respondent. I only got a CR14 form, which shows an address for the alleged directors. I visited the addresses stated thereon and talked to Muzarurwi Masimba, who confirmed that he stays at the address, but does not know anything about this company and is not a director of the third respondent and this renders the alleged transfer of the property to third respondent suspicious.”

The businessman said: “Unbeknown to me, while I was in the process of pursuing my application for the setting aside of the transfer of the property into third respondent’s name … it came to my knowledge on September 27 that the first, second and fifth respondents (Zifa (Pvt) Ltd and Zifa) had colluded to have the interpleader claim of the property by the second respondent granted.”

The matter is yet to be set down for hearing.

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