High Court Dismisses Jonathan Moyo’s Land Case

The High Court on Tuesday threw out an attempt by exiled former Cabinet minister Jonathan Moyo and his wife Beatrice to stop the government from repossessing their farm in Mazowe, Mashonaland Central.

Justice Esther Muremba ruled that the applicant, Mrs Moyo had no legal standing in the matter and dismissed the case. Justice Muremba said:

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She is just a third party who is in occupation of the land by virtue of being married to the second applicant,” said Justice Muremba.

She is farming on the land and her interest is purely economic. This constitutes financial interest, which is only indirect interest and that does not give her locus standi.

Justice Muremba also observed that if Mrs Moyo was on the farm, then she was riding on the offer letter of her husband, and thus as an individual, she has no right to that land.

Mrs Moyo had approached the High Court early this year challenging the Ministry of Lands, Agriculture, Water and Rural Resettlement’s decision to repossess Patterson Farm, arguing that the State sold the land to the former minister in 2002 and the outcome of that suit was still pending.

This was after Mr Barclos Mujuru was allocated the portion which had already been prepared for farming, thus the couple wanted to stop him from interfering with their occupation of the farm pending determination of their application for review.

Jonathan Moyo got the farm for “free” under the land reform programme but opted to pay the equivalent of US$105 401.84 after getting a loan from the Commercial Bank of Zimbabwe (CBZ) to get a secure title.

A number of former government ministers, especially those perceived to be aligned to the vanquished G40 faction have lost their farms prompting some to say land was being used as a political tool in the country.

More: The Herald


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