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Church leader challenges adultery damages

by Staff reporter
12 Sep 2014 at 07:31hrs | Views
The  leader of Johane Marange, Simon Branch, who was last month ordered to pay $10 000 in adultery damages following an affair with his nephew's wife, on Wednesday filed an application for an interim interdict at the High Court, alleging the magistrate who granted the order in favour of his relative was biased and had interests in the matter.

Magistrate Victor Mpofu granted a default judgment and ordered Clement Momberume to pay $10 000 to his nephew Jasper Dhliwayo, who accused him of bedding his wife, Mavis Sungayi.

In his application citing Dhilwayo, Mpofu and the messenger of court at Mutare as respondents, Momberume, who is represented by his lawyer Sindiso Mazibisa, claimed that despite a notice of review, an execution warrant has been effected by the messenger of court.

He argued that his nephew was after his riches and was abusing the court of law.

Momberume alleged that Sungayi is not Dhliwayo's wife at law, as he has no registered customary law marriage under the Marriages Act.

"It is obvious that the court order obtained under Case Number CC39/14 was obtained erroneously as custom law did not apply. No adultery was committed as the alleged 'wife' is not his. Therefore, the summons and the resultant order obtained is a nullity and cannot stand. I never committed adultery anywhere," he stated.

"The applicant (Momberume) applied for review of the proceedings against second respondent (Mpofu) as he committed gross irregularity in declaring that customary law applied under Section 3 of the Customary Law and Local Courts Act Chapter 7:05 and further declaring that the first respondent (Dhliwayo) had a constitutional right to choose the system of law applicable at the expense of the defendant…"

The clergyman argued that the magistrate should have recused himself from the matter when he filed an application for review of the judgment.

Mpofu dismissed Momberume's application for recession of the order that was granted in his absence.

"Applicant (Momberume) is now of the opinion that the second respondent (Mpofu) has an interest in the matter and was biased when he entertained the file instead of giving the file to an impartial magistrate. The magistrate made an 'order' only without reason for dismissal for my application for rescission of judgment," he stated.

Momberume is the pastor of 500 apostles of Johane Marange Simon Church.

He is well known for attempting to take over the original Johane Marange Church, which is estimated to have over two million followers and is led by High Priest Noah Jaguta.

The priest, who is based in Mutare, was sued by his nephew who alleged he was intimate on two occasions with his wife Sungayi, a registered nurse by profession, at the Greys Inn Hotel in Bulawayo, after drinking wine.

Source - Zim Mail