MDC Alliance Councillor Arrested For Selling Nonexistent Stand
An MDC Alliance councillor for Chitungwiza appeared at the Harare Magistrates Court Friday 13, August 2021 facing fraud charges after allegedly selling a nonexistent residential stand to an unsuspecting home-seeker.
Darlington Musonza appeared before magistrate Stanford Mambanje who remanded him to September 30 on $20 000 bail.
Musonza, who was represented by Lorretta Makumbe, is a councillor for ward 12 in Chitungwiza.
It is alleged that sometime in 2017, the complainant Kudakwashe Chatima approached a Chitungwiza-based real estate agent Vincent Tom-Barris intending to buy a residential stand.
A few days later, Tom-Barris advised Chatima that Musonza was selling residential stands in Chitungwiza.
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Tom-Barris then introduced Chatima to Musonza, who indicated that there was a stand, number 14557 in Zengeza 3 Extension, on sale.
It is further alleged that Chatima showed interest in the stand and agreed to purchase it for US$3 800.
On March 13, 2017, Chatima made a payment of US$3 230 through a bank transfer from his CABS bank account to Musonza’s Steward Bank account.
Chatima made a further cash payment of US$570 to Musonza to reach the agreed purchase price.
After receiving full payment, Musonza and Chatima then signed an agreement of sale.
Chatima was then given an allocation letter with a letterhead from Cone Textiles Housing Co-operative by Musonza and was advised to proceed to Chitungwiza Municipality offices to process a change of ownership.
However, the Chitungwiza housing director could not locate the file records for the stand.
Chatima then made a report at the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission and investigations revealed that stand number 14557 was an open space and not for residential purposes.
Scores of unsuspecting home seekers have over the years lost their hard-earned money to land barons who sell land acquired illegally or in places not designated for building houses.
Over the years, thousands of structures erected in undesignated sites have been destroyed leaving owners counting their losses.