A HARARE tenant’s attempt to take control of his landlord’s Borrowdale property came to a screeching halt on Monday after the Supreme Court upheld a High Court verdict ordering him to vacate the property.
The Supreme Court dismissed with costs the appeal by businessman Sherpherd Katuruza after the appellant withdrew the case saying he had consented with the house owner, Harare medical doctor, Christine Peta.
The pair had been involved in a year-long legal wrangle over the double storey house in the leafy surburb of Borrowdale, valued at US$500,000.
The businessman argued that he had become the owner of the house on the grounds that he had entered into a rent-to-buy agreement with Peta.
He argued that his monthly rentals were going towards payment of the house.
When Peta attempted to take control of her property, Katuruza refused to vacate arguing she had sold it to him.
The matter then spilled into the High Court where Justice David Mangota ruled in Peta’s favour.
Mangota ordered the eviction of Katuruza and all those claiming occupation through him from Stand No 152 Port Glen Road, Ryelands, Borrowdale, Harare.
He was ordered to make a payment of $4 000 as arrears for the month of April 2019 and May 2019, payment of $3 250 being arrear rates and water bills.
He was also ordered to pay costs on an attorney and client basis.
Katuruza, however, proceeded to take the matter to the Supreme Court.
In his appeal, he insisted that Justice Magonta misdirected himself and that he had been leasing the said house from Peta for US$2000 per month since 2013 before she went to South Africa to further her medical studies.
However, he finally conceded on Monday and withdrew the case paving way for Peta to regain her property.
A jubilant Peta told Zim Morning Post that the trauma she has experienced has been nothing short of a nightmare.
“Sometimes I would wake up in the morning and drive to my house to just hoot but he never opened the gate for me. I own a US$500,000 property yet I squash in a one room lodging,” Peta said fighting back tears.
“As I speak I don’t even know the state of the property because he would never allow me access. All my property is in there.”