In summons filed with the High Court last Friday, Buyanga says Matutu named him on a list of corrupt individuals who had manipulated the country’s “land acquisition process.”
“The publication referred to the fact of the plaintiff (Buyanga) being on the list of fraudsters of the land acquisition process. The aforesaid publication wrongfully and maliciously, with injurious intent stated of the plaintiff that: the plaintiff has prejudiced the general public by manipulating and defrauding the country’s land acquisition process thereby portraying the plaintiff as a fraudster and an unethical businessman,” Buyanga’s lawyers Rubaya and Chatambudza Legal Practitioners said in court papers.
The allegations were according to the businessman, published in the media on August 7.
Buyanga says that the story also insinuated that he is “an individual who has benefitted from alleged lack of accountability in the (late) Robert Mugabe-led government and owns multiple farms acquired during the land reform programme.
“Furthermore, the allegations published as aforesaid, in the context of the story, were wrongful and defamatory to the plaintiff in that they were intended and understood by the readers to mean that the plaintiff is cruel and a dishonest individual who unjustifiably grabbed vast pieces of land at the expense of the generality of Zimbabweans,” the lawyers said.
Buyanga wants Matutu to retract his utterances by publishing an apology, as well as paying him $4 million for defamation.
The case is pending.