TWO Mazowe miners have approached the High Court for a revision of judgment accusing the late former Finance minister Christopher Kuruneri of secretly acquiring an order for their eviction without their knowledge.
The miners, Sipho Mlalazi and Thabani Ndhlovu, who are being represented by Tinashe Zinto, want the eviction order rescinded.
They cited Paidamoyo Patience Kuruneri, who is the executor of the estate of Christopher Kuruneri, the mining commissioner Mashonaland Central, provincial mining director (Mashonaland Central), Mines minister Soda Zhemu and the Mines secretary as respondents.
According to court papers, Mlalazi and Ndhlovu are holders of mining claims and certificates of registration at Ascotvale Farm in Mazowe, which farm is listed in Kuruneri’s estate.
The two are owners of the mines known as Rosary 101 and Rosary 47, respectively.
They have been operating there since 2008 and their certificates of registration were issued sometime in 2002.
The duo claimed that they enjoyed undisturbed and peaceful mining for 15 years until 2016 when Kuruneri tried to evict them.
They were reinstated to the mine via an October 24, 2017 court order.
Mlalazi and Ndhlovu went to the Mines and Mining Development ministry offices in Bindura on December 11, 2023 to submit labour returns and renew inspection certificates.
According to the duo, that is when the Commissioner of Mines Mashonaland Central told them that they could not renew their inspection certificates as there was a court order issued on March 25, 2021 against them.
“Upon perusal of the order, we took notice that this is an order that substantially and directly affects our interests at the mining location, and the same ought to have been served on us,” they submitted.
The applicants argued that they were not cited in the said court application.
“… this honourable court has powers to correct, vary or rescind its judgments and orders when an order has been erroneously sought and erroneously granted in the absence of any party affected thereby.
“I take the advise of our legal practitioners that our case falls squarely in the category stated above,” they submitted.
They added: “The first respondent (Estate of Kuruneri) mischievously avoided citing or making the applicant part of the proceedings because it was clear that as holders of certificates of registration, we are interested parties, and our rights ought to have been protected.
“It is this failure by the first respondent to notify us of the proceedings that were before the honourable court that has seen us approaching this court to have the order granted on March 25, 2021 rescinded so that we be given an opportunity to defend our rights as evidenced by the certificates of registration.
“The first respondent clearly ignored our rights, which makes the order of March 25 erroneous and rescindable in terms of Rule 29 of the honourable court’s rules.”
The application is pending.