LOCAL government minister, Ignatious Chombo’s messy divorce case threatens to explode again as the Zanu PF politburo member is allegedly failing to honour terms of the agreed settlement with ex-wife Marian.
BY PATRICE MAKOVA
The Chombos divorced by consent in September last year after nearly four years of haggling over the distribution of family assets.
The Standard understands Marian was last week battling to get title deeds to immovable properties, bus, horse and trailer in accordance with the divorce settlement.
while the two parties had agreed on August 31 2012 that she would have access to all the farm equipment, Chombo was allegedly denying her use of tractors, trailers, dam water and slasher.
Chombo’s farm manager allegedly told Marian’s employee on January 30 this year that he was under instruction to deny her access to farm equipment.
Chombo was also said to be refusing to surrender a bus and a 30-tonne truck.
Marian’s lawyer, Beatrice Mtetwa recently wrote to Chombo’s lawyer, Wilson Manase, seeking to know why the minister was not complying with the provisions of the court order.
“We are instructed that your client has done nothing to ensure that ours [client] has the titles to the immovable properties and that she is being denied access to the farm equipment,” wrote Mtetwa.
“It is our view that there would be no need to further litigate on this matter as we are dealing with an order that was by consent.
“However, should the non-compliance continue, please be advised that we have instructions to approach the courts for enforcement.”
But Manase last week said Chombo had not refused to surrender the concerned title deeds to his former wife.
He said transferring property ownership from one person to another was a long process which involved the payment of capital gains taxes to the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra).
Manase said as a cabinet minister, Chombo was lowly paid; hence he was struggling to raise enough money to pay Zimra.
“Her [Marian] lawyers must write to us so that we transfer the properties into her name,” said Manase.
“But as you are aware, whether it’s a divorce or donation, there is a need to pay capital gains. Chombo as a minister, has no cash. It’s a myth that he is super rich. He is struggling like most other people.”
Manase also denied that Chombo was refusing Marian access to farm equipment. “The court order clearly states that all the farm equipment and implements belong to Chombo. If she wants to use them all, she has to do is to ask nicely,” he said.
Manase said the bus Marian was referring to was as good as a shell and hardly of any use.
“If she wants it, she can go and collect it from where it is. But there is no bus to talk about as it is just a shell. As for the 30-tonne truck, she got it before the divorce,” he said.
The Chombos married under the Marriages Act Chapter 5:11 in Harare on May 21 1993.
Under the divorce settlement, Marian, among other things, got six trucks, three trailers, an AVM bus, and Toyota landcruiser, Mercedes Benz, Twin Cab Hardbody and a Nissan Wolf. She also got the Greendale home, four flats in Queensdale, two flats along Mutare Road, two Shawasha Hills Stands, a Glen View 7 house and Ruwa plot.
Chombo on the other hand retained a stand in Norton, four flats in Queensdale, two flats in Rhodesville, Mica point stand in Kariba and all implements at Allan Grange farm in Raffingora.