Mike Mlombwa, Blantyre City Council land dispute goes to court


The High Court in Blantyre granted an injunction to Mike Mlombwa of Countrywide Car Hire through his attorneys, Churchill and Norris Law Consultants, stopping construction works on a disputed plot at Kristwick in Blantyre.
The plot, which was being developed by Corporate Trading Limited, was said to have also been offered to Mlombwa in 2016.
The injunction restrains officials from Corporate Trading Limited from continuing to develop the plot until an inter-partes hearing by the court where a decision would be made.
“We are pleased to advise you that the court granted you an interlocutory injunction restraining any further development or dealings on the plot in question. We are proceeding with an application for both parties to be heard,” reads part of a document from Mlombwa’s legal counsel.
Meanwhile, the court is yet to set a date for the hearing of the case between Mlombwa (complainant) and the Blantyre City Council (BCC) and Corporate Trading Limited as defendants.
BCC Public Relations Manager Anthony Kasunda said the council’s legal team is yet to be served with the injunction.
Lawyer for Corporate Trading Limited, Lusungu Gondwe, also said his office and his client are yet to be served.
When The Daily Times visited the disputed plot number Blantyre Central 131D on Monday, it found that construction works had stopped.
Some documents, which The Daily Times has seen, show that Mlombwa was offered the land and had made a down payment of K12.5 million of the K23 million premium in 2016.
In September 2017, Mlombwa said he was surprised to see some officials from Corporate Trading Limited at the site and some labourers erecting an iron-sheet perimeter fence.
His attempt to inquire what was going on invited a letter from Ritz Attorneys-at-Law—clients for Corporate Trading Limited which, among other things, demanded Mlombwa to desist from visiting the plot as well as withdraw threats allegedly made to Corporate Trading Limited’s Karamat Chaundry.
The letter further indicated that Corporate Trading Limited has all documentation of title to the plot in question.
Meanwhile, Mlombwa claimed that despite offering the land to the Corporate Trading Limited, the council is yet to refund his K12.5 million.
On Monday, Kasunda trashed claims that the council had offered the same piece of land to two different developers adding that Mlombwa had been offered a different land.
Kasunda further said Mlombwa failed to comply with almost all the offer conditions, hence the council’s action to withdraw the plot and allocate it to another potential developer.
On the court action by Mlombwa, Kasunda said the council was glad and encouraged Mlombwa to do that with speed for justice to be done.

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