By Abel Zhakata
Rising Mutare-based sungura musician Brian Runganga allegedly lost US$95 000 to a lawyer and an accomplice who fraudulently sold him a property in Morningside low-density suburb which belonged to another person.
Runganga, who is popularly known as Brian Samaita in the music industry, only realised that he had been sold a dummy when he saw an advert in the local Press that stated that the house which he had purchased had been attached and was now being sold by the Deputy Sherriff.
The matter was reported to the police and a fraud case has since been opened against the Harare-based lawyer, Shepherd Makonyere, and Secline Nyamudeza at Mutare Central Police Station.
The case, which came to court on Monday as a summons matter at the Mutare Magistrates’ Courts, did not go for trial and was postponed to January 20 next year.
In his statement to the police, Runganga said he got to know about the house, No. 7061 Wentwood Drive, Morningside, after he talked to an estate agent, Wellington Musevenzi of Menger Properties.
“Sometime in 2017, I wanted to buy a residential property and I talked to Musevenzi who told me that there was a divorced couple in Morningside who were selling their house. He further told me that I was supposed to communicate with Shepherd Makonyere, a lawyer based in Harare who was handling the divorce case between the owners of the house,” he said.
“I then drove to Harare in the company of Musevezi to meet Makonyere at his offices. Upon our arrival in Harare we met the accused person at his office and we entered into an agreement with him. He told us that he had the power of attorney over the property. We entered into an agreement and we negotiated to the value of US$90 000. We then agreed on a payment plan in which I was supposed to pay US$60 000 upon signing of the agreement of sale.”
Runganga said he then instructed Taurai Lawrence Chitsinde to deposit US$55 500 into a ZB account number 4112156151080 under S. Makonyere Legal Practitioners Trust as instructed by the accused person.
Runganga said he further deposited US$4 500 into Musevenzi’s CBZ account as per instruction l by Makonyere.
“After I deposited the whole amount, the accused then drafted an agreement of sale and stated a payment plan of the balance of US$30 000. I drove back to Mutare. Accused later sent the agreement of sale through an e-mail to Menger Properties to the attention of Musevenzi who then called me together with one of the registered owners of the house, Secline Nyamudeza, and we all signed the agreement of sale.”
Runganga said he then laboured to look for the balance of US$30 000 which he paid by November 20, 2018.
“I then demanded the title deeds of my house since I had finished payment but I was told by the accused that the title deeds were withheld by Zesa as the owners of the house owed Zesa US$30 0000. He further told me that he was going to effect the payment to Zesa and obtain the title deeds. It took a long time. Accused gave me excuses till I saw an advert in The Sunday Mail that the house which I had fully purchased was being sold by the Deputy Sheriff.
“I then proceeded to Zesa to inquire and was informed that the house belonged to Alfred Zivanai Mukarakate and that all the people I was dealing with were not the owners of the house and that Mukarakate owed Zesa and that is why the house was being sold,” said Runganga.
Makonyere is being represented by Mr Chris Ndlovu of Gonese and Ndlovu Legal Practitioners while Nyamudeza is represented by Mr Cosmas Chibaya. ManicaPost