BY CHARLES LAITON
Former Mazowe Estate residents who were evicted from their land to pave way for the expansion of late former President Robert Mugabe’s family business, Gushungo Holdings (Pvt) Ltd, have made a beeline to the High Court seeking to evict the ex-First Family’s business from their properties.
On Monday this week, another Mazowe miner, Ngoni Mutopo, who is one of the victims who were chased away from his operation, petitioned the court seeking an order to interdict Gushungo Holdings from barring him to access his gold mining claims.
Mutopo’s application came two weeks after another miner Langton Chapungu, also petitioned the High Court seeking eviction of Grace Mugabe together with two other individuals only identified in court papers as Tongai and Jemwa from Mazowe Citrus Estate.
In his application, Mutopo, accused Gushungo Holdings of interfering with his operations.
“The applicant (Mutopo) was unlawfully chased from his two blocks of mines Iron Mask 68 and 69 in Iron Mask Estate in Mazowe, where he has been lawfully mining and is being denied the right by the respondent (Gushungo Holdings), who is acting unlawfully and without a court order authorising him to act in that manner,” Mutopo said in his papers.
“The applicant’s ore on the mining site is being stolen by illegal panners who are working in cahoots with the respondent’s employees. The applicant is being prejudiced by the respondent’s unlawful actions, hence is seeking urgent relief.”
Since Mugabe’s ouster from office in November 2017, the former First Family has never enjoyed peace following several lawsuits against them mainly by those whose land was allegedly seized by the once powerful family.
In his application, Chapungu accused Grace, Tongai and Jemwa of interfering with his farming activities at his plot.
“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 said.
“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 has 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.”