BY CHARLES LAITON
FORMER First Lady Grace Mugabe’s business empire is headed for the cliff, as a Mazowe gold miner she displaced during her late husband, Robert Mugabe’s reign, is now seeking to evict her and repossess the farm where the mine is located.
The miner, Langton Chapungu, recently approached the High Court seeking the former First Lady’s eviction together with two other individuals who were only identified in court papers as Tongai and Jemwa.
Since Mugabe’s ouster from power through a coup in November 2017, the former First Family has not enjoyed peace following several lawsuits filed against them by farmers and miners dispossessed of their land as the Mugabes expanded their business empire in Mazowe, Mashonaland Central province.
The family is facing similar threats from Harare property owners who were displapced to pave way for expansion of Mugabe’s Blue Roof mansion in Borrowdale.
“The first and second respondents (Tongai and Jemwa) are doing illegal mining activities in my plot and the third respondent (Grace) is also doing her farming activities in that same plot of mine, to an extent that she had even erected some structures at my place,” Chapungu stated.
“The defendants have gone further threatening me with unspecified action if I continue disturbing them from their illegal activities in my plot. In spite of the demand to vacate, the defendants have refused and offered flimsy and fabricated reasons to justify their continued illegal stay at my place, leaving me with no option except to approach this honourable court for relief,”
The eviction bid comes shortly after Mashonaland Central provincial mining director Tariro Ndhlovu, through a memo dated September 18, 2019, called on all mining claim owners in Manzou, Surtic, Smithfield, Arnold, Yarrowdale, Foyle Estate, Brecon, Bandari, Brundret, Maggiesdale and Glenbervile farms, some of which were owned by Grace, to get back to the farms.
There were also reports that Grace risked losing one of her properties that form part of her family’s Blue Roof mansion in Borrowdale Brooke following a High Court ruling in June to let go of the land in favour of the applicants, Farai and Nyasha Chitsinde.
The Sherriff of the High Court has issued a warrant of ejection against the Mugabe family, which has until the end of today to move out of the contested portion of the land.