By Tendai Kamhungira
MDC president Morgan Tsvangirai is off the hook after the High Court on Wednesday struck off the roll an application by Harare man Moreprecision Muzadzi, who is seeking $50 000 compensation for reportedly offering consultancy services to the veteran politician ahead of the 2013 elections.
Justice Felistas Chatukuta threw out the charges against the former prime minister, a ruling hailed as a major victory by the vocal opposition leader and critic of President Robert Mugabe.
Tsvangirai had been accused of entering into a verbal agreement with Muzadzi sometime in 2013 together with the MDC leader’s co-defendants, Manatsa Tsvangirai, who is the MDC leader’s brother and the party’s deputy national chairperson Morgen Komichi, for him to negotiate with other opposition party leaders to form a coalition with Tsvangirai.
But Judge Chatukuta struck the case off the roll, which had taken long after a string of postponements. The reasons for the judgment are not yet ready.
Tsvangirai and his co-defendants had not responded to the application, which forced Muzadzi, who is the president of the little-known Voice of the People opposition party, to approach the court early this month seeking a default judgment.
“To date the defendants (Tsvangirai, Manatsa and Komichi) have failed to enter an appearance to defend; moreover the defendants are woefully out of time for entering the appearance to defend as stipulated by the rules of this honourable court,” Muzadzi said in his founding affidavit.
“The plaintiff (Muzadzi) hereby applies that; the summons having been issued on June 9, 2017, the first, second and third defendants having been duly served on June 15, 2017, the defendants not having entered an appearance to defend timeously, judgment may be entered for the plaintiff as claimed in the summons for $7 800, Nissan NP 200 and damages in the sum of $50 000 together with prescribed interest rate.”
Muzadzi told the court that Tsvangirai and the other defendants failed to honour their side of the bargain, forcing him to seek legal recourse.
“In accordance with the terms of the agreement plaintiff duly rendered his services in drafting a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) and negotiated with defendants and other political party leaders that they were going to field Tsvangirai as the sole presidential candidate against Zanu PF,” he said.
“Plaintiff and partner successfully negotiated with the following party leaders to support the first defendant’s presidential candidate; Simba Makoni (MKD), Dumiso Dabengwa (Zapu), Margaret Dongo (Zud), and 15 others.”
The court heard that in alleged breach of the said agreement, Tsvangirai and his colleagues reneged on their promise but instead unleashed some people who then attacked Muzadzi and Kisinoti Mukwazhe, president of the Zimbabwe Development Party. Daily News