ZRP, ZACC Under Pressure to Act on Farm Fraud Allegations

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HARARE – Victims of a fraudulent land scheme at Crowhill Farm are calling on the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) and the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) to take decisive action against Florence and Felix Pambukani.

The couple is accused of swindling them through illegal land sales.

The scandal first came to light when it was revealed that the Pambukanis had been selling land they did not own to unsuspecting buyers. Despite court orders to vacate the land, the couple continues to deceive people using counterfeit court verdicts and urgent applications.

The matter, which has seen close to 200 people contacting an on-ground reporter, Courage Chabvongodza, to air their grievances, has now reached the ZACC offices.

Reports indicate that dozens of diasporans have also filed complaints for investigation.

Victims are demanding justice and the return of their money.

“We are tired of their tricks; we need our money back,” said one anonymous victim.

Another expressed fear, stating, “I know their history of hiring thugs to attack people; I don’t know what to do; I have nowhere to go.”

The Pambukanis are also accused of forcibly evicting farmers from their land. Last year, they allegedly hired thugs to attack workers at Wakefield Farm, a property they tried to seize.

In 2008, they illegally took over Scotsdale Farm, leading to the death of its rightful owner in 2010. After evicting the owner, they also displaced all the farm workers, leaving them homeless.

Attempts to contact the Pambukanis for comment were unsuccessful, as they were unreachable at the time of publication.

There are calls for a thorough investigation by ZACC to bring justice to the affected home seekers.

The ZRP is also being urged to act swiftly to halt the couple’s illegal activities and protect future victims.

Florence and Felix Pambukani, once convicted and jailed for fraud, have withdrawn their High Court suit seeking to stop the eviction of illegal settlers occupying Crowhill Estate in Borrowdale.

This follows a High Court order issued in 2021, which mandated the eviction.

The couple’s attempt to block the Sheriff of the High Court from enforcing this order has failed, as urgent applications cannot be tied to past events.

The High and Supreme Courts have both ordered the couple not to sell land on Crowhill Estate.

Crowhill Estate lawyer, Mr. Timon Tabana, who represents the legal owners of the estate, confirmed the withdrawal of the matter.

“They filed an urgent application on May 11 seeking to set aside the writ of execution, but the application was removed from the roll of urgent matters because it had been overtaken by events,” he said.

“They attempted another application to interdict the Sheriff but withdrew the application at the hearing, because a court cannot interdict a past event.”

The couple withdrew their application last Wednesday before Justice Lucy-Anne Mungwari, on the grounds that the relief sought had already been overtaken by events.

The Pambukanis claim to own land measuring over 724 hectares and sought to stop the Sheriff, with police assistance, from evicting tenants and illegal occupants, and to halt the demolition of structures without a court order.

In his opposing papers, Mr. Tabana argued that the Pambukanis’ application could not pass the test of urgency, as no urgency can be attached to past events done in terms of due process.

Despite a High Court order and subsequent Supreme Court confirmation barring them from selling the disputed property, the Pambukanis resumed illicit operations at Crowhill Estate, posing as rightful landowners and duping desperate buyers.

The estate is legally owned by Crowhill Private Limited.

The 2021 High Court order, which mandated the eviction of all illegal occupants, remains disregarded as buyers, misled by the Pambukanis, resist eviction.

Crowhill Pvt Ltd officials have made efforts to rectify the situation by inviting affected individuals to regularize their land status or face eviction.

However, the couple’s continued activities have left many in financial distress.

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