By Cynthia Dube
Controversial Esigodini businessman Baron Dube makes nearly $10 000 per month and has six gold mines, a farm, four shops and a herd of 200 cattle, his estranged wife told a Maintenance Court hearing in Bulawayo yesterday.
Ms Nikki Cameron (23) dragged the gold baron to the Maintenance Court demanding $650 per month for the upkeep of their three minor children aged four years, one year and five months.
Dube (42) of Habane Township in Esigodini is allegedly not contributing towards the upkeep of his children.
“Your Worship, I need the money to buy food, clothes and pay school fees for my children. I know that he can afford $650 because he owns six mines. He has two mines in Esigodini and other mines at Inyathi, Filabusi, Fort Rixon and Woodlands,” said Ms Cameron.
“Baron prefers to pay someone to drive him all over the place yet he doesn’t want to support our children. I’ve been in this marriage for the past five years and have been assisting in managing his business but he never appreciates.”
Dube said he can only afford to pay $150 per month because he was unemployed and has six other children, bringing the total number of his children to nine.
He told the court that Ms Cameron was lying about the number of businesses he runs.
“She is lying; I have a mine and 56 cows. I also have other six children that need my support. Zimbabwe’s economy is very bad, people don’t have money and I only make $300 per month from all the shops including the sports bar,” Dube said.
Asked by Magistrate Tashaya how much he makes per month, the businessman said:
“From shops I realise $300. I can give her $150 per month because these other six children are at school and they are in arrears. I need to clear all the arrears at their school”.
Mr Tashaya told the gold baron that it was clear that he was lying in court and postponed the matter to February 3.
“You told me that you are unemployed and your wife is telling me that you are a businessman. You are telling the court that you have 56 cows while your wife whom you have been married to for the past five years says you have 200 cattle. Why are you lying in court?” asked the magistrate.
Mr Tashaya told Dube that he would order him to pay more than $650 if he discovers that he was lying in court.
“I’m postponing this matter to February 3. Dube come with the ownership books for the cattle and mines. I want to see the number of cattle that you have.
Can you please bring your mine licences, birth certificates of your other six children and your bank statement,” he said.
In November last year, there were violent clashes at one of Dube’s mining claims in Filabusi that claimed the life of his nephew.
Qalisani Moyo, who was popularly known as “Friday” of Sanale area in Filabusi, was axed to death after his right foot was chopped off in a fight over the gold claim at HeyHill Farm.
Dube later revealed that on the day his relative died, they were supposed to travel together to the claim for a meeting, but he later decided against going there. The Chronicle