LEBANESE businessman Jamal Ahmed has approached the High Court in a bid to force First Lady Grace Mugabe off his properties in the botched $1,35 million diamond ring saga.
The businessman now wants the court to force the Deputy Sheriff of Zimbabwe and the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) to perform their constitutional mandates.
Ahmed last week filed an application seeking to compel the Sheriff "to perform his statutory obligation and to bring to an end the unlawful occupation" of his three properties as ordered by the High Court in December last year.
The businessman and his three firms – Thatchfree Investment (Pvt) Ltd (registered owner of a Pomona property in Harare), Super Earth (Pvt) Ltd (registered owner of a house in Avondale) and Itchester Investments (Pvt) Ltd (registered owner a house along King George, Avondale in Harare) – cited Deputy Sheriff Macduff Madega and the JSC as respondents.
Ahmed said on January 7 this year, ejection of those illegally occupying the properties was supposed to have been effected but Madega developed cold feet and later raised security concerns.
"I also point out that this was clearly an afterthought which was designed to explain the failure to timeously execute the writ. If there was a genuine need for police assistance, it would not have taken Mr Madega up to 11th of January to advise the need for police assistance," he said. "I also point out that Number 75 King George Road, Avondale, is not occupied as respondents in the main action simply put a large chain and padlock at the main gate and all the first respondent (Sheriff) needs is a locksmith to unlock the padlock and hand over the property."
Ahmed also said the Sheriff had "continued with his dillydallying and has not to date, explained why he needs police escort in an eviction where his authority has not been threatened".
The businessman said it was clear the Sheriff was also afraid of the First Lady.
"I contend that the failure to substantially respond to issues raised in all my legal practitioners' letters is because there is simply no explanation from the first respondent for his failure other than that one of the respondents in the main application is the First Lady," Ahmed said.
"I contend that Mr Walter Chikwanha's (JSC secretary) response, apart from being grossly inadequate, is unhelpful in the extreme as it does not explain what assistance is sought and why such assistance is being sought. It is as bereft of reasoning as is the first respondent's request to the police which also merely seeks unspecified assistance from the police without explaining why such assistance is required."
The matter is yet to be heard.