Businessman Chapfika fights property attachment

HARARE - Prominent businessman MacDonald Chapfika is battling to block the sale of his household property that was attached by a law firm over unpaid legal fees.

Chapfika, who had his exclusive deal to supply Harare City Council with water treatment chemicals cancelled in 2010 due to overpricing, failed to pay $10 000 owed to P Chiutsi Legal Practitioners, which recently got a writ of execution from the Harare Magistrates’ Courts to attach his property.

The ruling empowered the Messenger of Court to proceed to Chapfika’s farm in Mutoko to attach the property.

However, Chapfika — brother to former deputy Finance minister David Chapfika — filed an urgent ex parte chamber application at the same court for stay of execution, arguing the attached property actually belonged to his wife.

“The goods attached are household goods at my farm in Mutoko, the bulk of which belong to my wife. It goes without saying that an attachment and subsequent removal of household property causes excruciating mental anguish on my wife as it deprives the family of their source of comfort and entertainment at the farm,” argues Chapfika in court papers.

He also argues that the property attachment would tarnish his image and compromise his businesses.

“The said attachment and possible removal of my goods is likely to tarnish my image in the eyes of my business associates and my neighbours,” he says.

Chapfika further contends that he never agreed to pay P Chiutsi Legal Practitioners $10 000 as legal fees.

“I never agreed on any fees as high as the extortionate and stratospheric $10 000 that the second respondent (the law firm) is claiming. After persistent and unreasonable demands for payment, I paid the second respondent $2 000 and a further $1 000 after further demands. I therefore vehemently deny that I am indebted to the second respondent as claimed in the matter,” reads Chapfika’s application.

Among the property listed to go under the hammer is a water pump, two generators, chairs, carpets, side tables, a projector and dining set with a table and nine chairs, among other items.

This is not the first time Chapfika is fighting debt-related lawsuits.

In 2014, he lost property valued at $21 000 that was attached after he failed to repay a debt to Nelhurst Trading.

The property was attached from his upmarket Glen Lorne home in Harare.

In 2011, the High Court ordered the sale of a double storey house he owned after he defaulted on a $300 000 CBZ loan.

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