THE nasty fight between First Lady Grace Mugabe and Lebanese businessman, Ahmed Jamal, over a $1,35 million diamond ring, has taken a new twist with threatening WhatsApp chats between the two submitted in court as exhibits.
BY CHARLES LAITON
In the chats, Grace, who Jamal said used the name Rowesai Virimai, allegedly threatened to use extra-judicial means to grab Jamal’s properties and block him from coming back into the country.
In his latest affidavit demanding that Police Commissioner-General Augustine Chihuri and his three subordinates be cited as respondents in the case, Jamal accuses the law enforcement agents of “poking their nose in a civil issue”.
Jamal claims he had his three Harare properties illegally seized by Grace and her son, Russell Goreraza, after a diamond ring deal went sour.
In the affidavit, Jamal attaches WhatsApp chats he claims to have had with Grace.
Part of the messages quotes the First Lady as having said: “Threaten as much as you want, the property is gone, you have to come to terms with that you can abuse me but you owe me, you won’t force me to wear that thing…
“So why worry abusing me, you know it, all it’s your house, why not come and live in it! You only talk about your property what about my money … Stupid. Don’t ever think you will enter this country again (sic).”
In the massages, Grace accuses Jamal of being abusive, saying this will not solve anything.
“Can you please stop writing me, I don’t want any communication with you from now please,” she wrote.
Jamal denies threatening her, saying he had many houses around the world and only wanted what was his.
“It’s ok ma’am you are the First Lady in Zimbabwe and you rule.
“But one thing for sure, your $1m we don’t need. You can sure ask Dr Mhlanga and Rozana, I have never … safe if you change your mind, you can collect it from our office in Dubai.
“We are asking you to ask your people that break into our premises to leave my house. If any damages are done, we will have to let them pay for all (sic).”
It is not clear who Mhlanga and Rozana are.
Jamal, in the affidavit, then argues, police, in seizing his properties, were acting on directives from Goreraza and Grace, the first and second respondents, respectively, who had indicated their willingness to take over “properties associated with me in Zimbabwe”.
“I attach, hereto, as Annexure A1 threads of messages exchanged between the second respondent (Grace) and myself, where she goes by the moniker Rowesai Virimai.”
Jamal cites Chihuri, Senior Assistant Commissioner Thulani Ncube in his capacity as the Officer Commanding CID Law and Order and Superintendent Nyambo Viera, who is also attached to the Law and Order section as co-respondents.
“This is an application in terms of Order 13, Rule 87(2)(b) of the High Court Rules, 1971 and in terms of the Common Law for orders; joining the respondents in their respective capacities as fourth, fifth and sixth respondents in the matter under case number HC12497/16,” Jamal said through his lawyers Mtetwa and Nyambirai Legal Practitioners.
Jamal said he was of the view that the involvement of the top cops would necessitate the proper and full resolution of the dispute between him and the First Family.
The businessman also accuses Grace of abusing her status as First Lady, adding she had “scoffed” at the provisional court order issued on December 21 last year ordering her and her son to vacate all the properties they had seized.
Jamal claimed Grace taunted him, declaring she was in-charge of the country, adding the First Lady had also victimised his workers in the process.
While Grace has claimed the properties seizure was a police action that had nothing to do with her, Jamal argued to the contrary.
“Instead, I immediately received a text message from the second respondent (Grace) to leave her son (Goreraza) out and to do my papers in her name, a clear indication that she had seen the letter of demand.
“There was no claim, then, that this was a police operation, as is now claimed by Grace Mugabe and her son,” Jamal claimed, adding Grace had boasted she was immune from prosecution.
“I have no doubt that the actions of the police are motivated by their misplaced loyalty to the first family in fragrant breach of their constitutional obligations and the rule of law as there is no law that permits them to occupy properties without some form of court sanction.”
The business mogul further averred that he was convinced that Grace was involved in the property takeover from day one, as indicated by her “mocking me”.
The matter is set to be heard in the motion court today before High Court judge, Justice Lavender Makoni.