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Chombo appeals High Court farm ruling

by Staff reporter
22 May 2024 at 09:40hrs | Views
Former Cabinet Minister Ignatius Chombo has lodged an appeal with the Supreme Court challenging a High Court ruling that dismissed his petition to halt the Government's reduction of his 3,099-hectare farm to the standard size for his ecological zone.

In a recent judgment, the High Court Commercial Division declined Chombo's application, ruling it inappropriate for granting the declaratory orders he sought. Justice Jacob Manzunzu dismissed the application with costs.

Chombo, represented by his lawyer Professor Lovemore Madhuku, is now seeking the Supreme Court's intervention to overturn the decision.

In the notice of appeal filed, Madhuku argued that the High Court had erred in going beyond the scope of the High Court Act and in its handling of Marian Chombo's position. He contested the court's finding that it could override the lease agreement with the Government.

The dispute arose from a tripartite agreement Chombo entered into with Pepary Investments (Private) Limited and the Government of Zimbabwe in March 2018. The agreement granted the Government rights to repossess parts of the leasehold.

While arguments were made regarding Chombo's divorce and the Land Commission Act, Justice Manzunzu refrained from delving into these matters, stating the court's jurisdiction did not extend to family court issues.

Despite Chombo's assertions that the Minister lacked authority to cancel the 99-year lease under the Land Commission Act, Justice Manzunzu disagreed, stating that Chombo's reading of the tripartite agreement did not align with the court's interpretation.

Chombo was allocated the farm in 2001 and secured a 99-year lease agreement in 2006.

Source - The Herald
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