Lusaka woman fights uncles who tried grabbing her inherited house


FRIDAH Banda, a 32-year-old woman from Lusaka’s Meanwood compound, learned a harsh lesson about misplaced trust after her uncles allegedly tried to take the house left by her father.

Following the death of her father, a former Zambia Air Force officer in 2007, teenage Fridah inherited the family house and allowed her aged grandmother to continue living there out of love and respect.

Little did Fridah know, this act of kindness would become a weapon against her.

During the course of the years, renovations were made to the house and other flats built for rentals on the same land by her grandmother.

However, Fridah’s grandmother passed leaving behind a rumble of confusion in the family as, her six uncles swooped in with a shocking plan: sell the house.

They claimed Fridah had signed the ownership rights over to their mother before she died and were the ones behind the improvements of the house.

Fridah then decided to sue her uncles in the Matero Local Court to prevent them from selling her late father’s house.

“After the death of my father, all his properties and benefits were given to me and my grandmother as we were the only beneficiaries. But because I was young and only in grade 10, I decided to leave her in the house to stay despite it being mine because she was old,” Fridah told the court.

She disagreed, handing over the house to her grandmother saying she only allowed her grandmother to live there out of compassion and did not transfer ownership.

In his defense, her uncle Kelvin Banda, 49 argued that the house was given to their mother and renovated by the family.

“The percentages (of the properties left by Fridah’s father) were shared (among the two beneficiaries), and she gave the house to her grandmother, and we even renovated it. After she died, the house remained in our hands. But Fridah started getting rentals behind our back until we all decided that the house should be sold because it was going to bring us problems. But she refused,” he said.

Fridah countered, asking: “If I really gave the house to grandma, where did I sign to show that I had done so? Because I never wrote that anywhere. Even if you people want to sell that house, it is where we are all surviving from.”

Magistrate Lewis Mumba ruled in favour of Fridah, affirming her as the legal owner of the house.

“The legal owner of the house is her, it is in the father’s name. When you were fixing it and building more houses, you were doing it for her. You cannot tell her to sell the house, you also cannot sell the house without an administrator. You and your brothers have no rights whatsoever with that house,” said Magistrate Mumba.

Magistrate Mumba ordered Banda to hand over the house papers to Fridah, stating that no one can sell the property without her permission.
Credit kalemba



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