Mutemasango asked for a postponement to look for a lawyer.
Chimbetu was represented by Arshiel Mugiya, who advised the court that he had served Mutemasango with the court papers on October 19, and had ample time to look for a lawyer.
The matter was postponed to November 6, by Harare magistrate Lazini Ncube who warned Mutemasango to secure a lawyer because there would be no excuse for the trial to kick off on that date.
Chimbetu’s lawyer said: “This is just, but, a delaying tactic because the respondent had enough time to secure counsel of her own choice considering the time that she was served with papers. I understand that it is her constitutional right but November 6 would be very far.”
The 35-year-old musician has two children with Mutemasango and claims he can no longer afford the astronomical payments given the worsening economic hardships.
Chimbetu — who wed his long-time girlfriend Linda Samuriwo, with whom he also has a child — claims he makes approximately $750 monthly and has filed court documents asking to reduce the payments.
The Sean Timba hit-maker also said he has became the sole breadwinner at his home after his wife lost her job in August.
She used to earn $700 and Sulu said she used to assist with other expenses. He is offering $200 per month.
The application for variation — which will be heard before Harare Civil Court on October 30 — comes three months after Chimbetu was fined $100 for failure to pay maintenance after delaying sending the money to his ex-wife.
Through his lawyer Mugiya, Chimbetu said the $800 was unsustainable considering that the company he works for, Orchestra Dendera Kings (Pvt) Ltd, was only paying him $750.
“…that company is the one that owns the musical band known as Orchestra Dendera Kings together with all the musical instruments and motor vehicles that the band uses. The reason I have pointed out my actual earnings is because Mutemasango seems to have an understanding that I am swimming in a pool of gold,” Chimbetu said.
“The general economic crisis which is affecting the country has had direct bearing on the number of individuals who attend our shows as well as the number of shows held every week.”
Chimbetu said that the number of people who attended his music concerts had dropped from 700 to between 150 to 250 individuals.
He bemoaned the piracy scourge saying it was a contributor to the declining income.
“Producing a new album means costly payments of studio time, marketing as well as launching the album yet not even a cent is earned from that effort and this has deprived me of any extra income,” Chimbetu said.
“There also seems to be a misconception that I earn extra money from my roles as ambassador at Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services and Simon Chimbetu schools in Chegutu. I do not realise money from those projects but most of them have been a way of giving back to the community as a musician.
“While it is true that I appear on Delta Beverages and Alpha Omega Dairy adverts, I do not reap rewards every month because the contracts we entered were verbal and once-off payments.”
He submitted that the $200 he had offered was sufficient for Mutemasango and the children since she was allegedly heard bragging that she does not need to look for employment because the $800 received as maintenance was enough to cater for her needs and expenses.
“The respondent is not employed and I doubt that she has an incentive to do so as the money I provide her is enough for her to live a ‘‘lime-light’’ lifestyle and frequents places of entertainment and is well known in social circles…she survives and thrives on the maintenance money.” Daily News