Zanu PF Central Committee member, Phillip Chiyangwa, is claiming $1 000 000 from the party’s women’s league provincial chairperson, Ratidzo Mukarati over her alleged defamatory statements which he claims were uttered at the recently held women’s national meeting.
Chiyangwa who is also Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) president, filed summons against Mukarati on Wednesday this week through his lawyers, Mutamangira and Associates and the women’s chairperson is yet to respond to the lawsuit.
In his declaration, Chiyangwa claims on June 7 2018 Mukarati made some utterances while addressing the women’s national meeting which was attended by President Emmerson Mnangagwa and senior government and party officials.
Chiyangwa said Mukarati pleaded with the president to deal with him for allegedly selling land at Eyecourt Farm to Zanu PF party members at exorbitant prices.
“While defendant (Mukarati) was addressing the meeting in the presence of the President (Mnangagwa) and senior government and party functionaries, she publicly alleged that the plaintiff (Chiyangwa) owns land in Harare South including Eyecourt Farm,” Chiyangwa said.
“She unequivocally claimed that the plaintiff was making Zanu PF members pay a lot of money for the land at Eyecourt Farm. She then proceeded to plead for urgent intervention of the President to engage local authorities so that they could assist the prejudiced Zanu PF members.”
“She falsely alleged that plaintiff owns several properties in Harare South and, without basis whatsoever, attributed all property wrangles and disputes in Harare South to him……“Defendant falsely insinuated that the plaintiff is an unscrupulous businessman who charges excessive prices for urban land contrary to stated government policy and market rates,” he said.
“Defendant’s utterances falsely create an impression that the plaintiff is an unethical, heartless and ruthless individual who seeks to profiteer at the expense of the welfare of the less privileged members of society, conduct which fully undermines the stated values of Zanu PF,” he said.
“The plaintiff therefore claims, against the defendant, damages for defamation in the sum of $1 000 000.”
The businessman, who is also aspiring House of Assembly candidate for Zvimba South, said Mukarati’s utterances at the meeting were widely publicised by various media outlets nationwide adding “they were out rightly defamatory” of his good name and standing.