Locardia, Tsvangirai strike deal

HARARE - Harare businesswoman Locardia Karimatsenga has struck a deal to get thousands of dollars from Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai as part of her out-of-court settlement with the MDC leader, the Daily News can reveal.

Karimatsenga’s lawyer Jonathan Samkange yesterday confirmed that the two have closed the deal, but declined to disclose the terms of the agreement or the settlement.

The businesswoman withdrew the case from the courts yesterday.

“Be pleased to take notice that the applicant (Karimatsenga) hereby withdraws this action and respondent tenders wasted costs,” says a notice seen by the Daily News.

Asked why Karimatsenga had withdrawn her $15 000 per month maintenance suit, Samkange said: “It is because we have settled but I am not at liberty, neither is my client at liberty to disclose the terms of the agreement.”

With the parties engaged in a raft of court proceedings at the Civil Court over the past two months, the figure has not been argued in court, but is being touted between the duo’s lawyers.

Locardia is being represented by Jonathan and Everson Samukange, whilst Tsvangirai has engaged Advocate Thabani Mpofu.

Although none of the parties have been willing to reveal the figures to the press, according to sources, the lawyers have been discussing figures varying from $200 000 to $1million since last week Monday, with both parties digging in on their position.

The two have finally reached an agreement and agreed to take their maintenance case out of the public glare, with lawyers tight-lipped on the payout and conditions that will see the premier make a once off payment to cut ties with the former lover who was once pregnant with his twins before a miscarriage.

Locardia dragged Tsvangirai to court to push for maintenance and also to foil the premier’s planned wedding to current wife Elizabeth Macheka.

The wedding, held on September 15, was reduced to a customary union after Locardia’s successful court application.

The maintenance case was out of the window the moment the courts heard that the former lovebirds were talking about solving their affair privately.

In her maintenance application, Karimatsenga claimed that she looked up to Tsvangirai as her husband and hence the need for maintenance.

“I looked to him for financial support for the past year. Respondent, as my husband, has a responsibility to maintain me,” she said in the application.

Karimatsenga claims that she was used to a high standard of living, which she claims she was introduced to by the MDC leader.

Tsvangirai has tried to have the case struck off the court roll. But Harare magistrate Rueben Mukavhi last month dismissed an application by Tsvangirai’s lawyer to have the matter dismissed.

Advocate Mpofu had argued that the maintenance application was improperly served and was not presented on oath.

He further told the court that Karimatsenga had failed to follow the proper procedure for a maintenance application, but magistrate Mukavhi still dismissed the application and ordered that the matter be heard on merit.

The bantering lawyers have finally reached an agreement. In recorded court statements seen by the Daily News, Tsvangirai’s lawyer said they believed in settling the matter amicably.

Outside the courts, Tsvangirai had been dispatching emissaries to try and coax his ex-lover into a gentleman’s settlement with little success until this week. -
Tendai Kamhungira

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