TANZANIAN Uziel Bashire and three others claiming ownership of the 48 houses have recommenced the matter in which they are challenging the seizure of the said properties in the Lusaka High Court by way of originating summons.

Bashire, his cousin Zuberi Bigawa and Zambian Charles Loyana, a senior accountant at the Ministry of Finance, have sued ACC for forfeiting their property to the state, seeking a declaration that Loyana had and has a requisite power and authority to purchase, possess and own property in his name for his own benefit and any other person.

They want damages for breach of Statutory duty imposed on ACC in that the arbitrary seizure and continuation of holding on to the properties despite the claim made by the rightful owner was a breach of that duty and was unlawful and illegal.

The trio is seeking an order that Bashire had an interest in the properties bought by Loyana and the latter as the purchaser of the 48 houses be granted possession of the same.

The plaintiffs want an order that ACC accounts and pays Bashire or Loyana all the rentals from the date of seizure to the date of the order or in the alternative mesne profits.

According to an affidavit in support of originating summons, the plaintiffs explained that in 2011, Bashire decided to invest in real estate in Zambia.

They said upon acknowledging that Bashire was not qualified to own property in Zambia in his own name because he was a foreigner, he decided to partner with Loyana, who qualified to purchase and own land in Zambia, and that Bashire would fund the purchase of land and construction of estates.

“Through a Power of Attorney dated November 25, 2011, he (Bashire) appointed his cousin Bigawa and gave him power to nominate and delegate to a trusted Zambian to purchase and develop real estate properties in Zambia for which Bashire would have interest and would in future be the beneficial owner and or subsequently as an absolute owner, while upon purchase, Loyana would own and possess the properties,” the three claimed.

Bashire, Bigawa and Loyana stated that it was agreed by all the parties that Loyana would receive a commission of 5 percent for any property purchased and register and own the properties in his name or any nominees.

The plaintiffs said Loyana received K60,000 from Bigawa on May 26,2012 which he paid to lombe Bwalya and associates to buy plots 36 H and I at K30,000 each.

They said on May 29, 2012 Loyana was given K120,000 by Bigawa to Pay Lombe Bwalya and Associates to buy plots 36 N and O and 36 D and E.

Loyana on July 23, 2012 received K885,000 for the purchase of more plots where the 48 houses are erected.

The plaintiffs said Loyana’s wife Susan Sinkala assisted to apply for connection of electricity at Zesco for 24 units which were registered in her name.

Bashire, Bigawa and Loyana said Chali Chitala, a Kitwe based lawyer, was paid K200,000 to register ownership of the property in favour of Bashire.

The plaintiffs said that on August 24, 2018, the ACC issued a gazette notice to Loyana and six others, his wife, Chitala, Bruce Shikakhu, Messers Lombe Bwalya and Associates, Ishmael Zuneid Yousuf and Khankara and company, where ACC claimed the properties had different plot numbers adding that they had been recovered during investigations and would be forfeited to the state if no one claimed the houses within three months.

The plaintiffs said in 2019 they learnt, through the newspapers, that ACC director general Rosemary Khuzwayo, during an interview revealed that Chitala had disowned the properties and ACC had taken over the 48 houses.

They said Loyana and Bashire were interviewed by ACC to which Bashire said the 48 houses belonged him as he was the beneficial owner of the same but ACC has continued holding on to his houses without legal justification despite a claim being made.

They stated that ACC had arbitrarily continued holding on to the properties illegally and without any lawful justification, despite Bashire explaining that he had interest and was to be the beneficial owner of the properties, and that they were purchased through Loyana.

“Bashire, through his lawyers then Messrs Hobday Kabwe & Co. wrote to ACC twice requesting for removal of the seizure notices on the properties in Chalala but the defendant has neglected, ignored and or refused to hand back the properties to the owners and they continue to claim that they do not know of any owner, when in fact they had been aware of how the properties were purchased by Loyana from Messrs Lombe Bwalya and Associates, and the existence of the claims made to them from the time they issued notices related to the said properties, and that the claims were made within the period prescribed by law,” said the three.

Bashire, Bigawa and Loyana are further seeking a determination on whether ACC did not breach the statutory duty imposed on it by section 60 of the Anti-Corruption Commission (disposal of recovered property) Regulations, 2004 and all other enabling laws, by purporting to forfeit the 48 houses to the State despite the owners claiming the properties.

They want a declaration that ACC breached the statutory duty imposed on it by section 60 of the Anti-Corruption Act Regulations 3 of the Anti-Corruption Commission (disposal of recovered property) Regulations 2004 and all other enabling law by forfeiting the 48 houses to the state notwithstanding there was a claim of the properties by the owners.


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