A Zimbabwean woman who stays in Botswana has been accused of squandering P2, 33 million sent to her by her British lover.
Jeremy Robertson (57) has now dragged his now ex-girlfriend Simakahale Ndlovu, a naturalised Motswana from Zimbabwe as he tries to recoup his money.
Robertson said he sent the money to Ndlovu for her to build their dream home. He told a Francistown High Court judge that he first met Ndlovu during a holiday to Zimbabwe with workmates in December 2010.
The Voice newspaper reports that the couple hit it off immediately and started a long-distance relationship, with Robertson regularly travelling back to Francistown over the next five years to see his lover.
“In 2012 we discussed building a house together and getting married. However, I was unable to sell my property in London to finance the project. I turned 55 in 2016 and cashed in both of my pensions. I sent the money to her account in two batches, first I sent £50, 000 and later £17, 000 which added up to a little over P1 million,” said Robertson, adding that the cash was specifically for the construction of the house.
He sold his house in September 2017 and transferred £100, 000 into his girlfriend’s account. It was after this last deposit (worth about One-and-half-million Pula) that Robertson noticed a change in Ndlovu’s attitude towards him.
“She didn’t update me on the project and when I talked to her she became mono-syllabic; it became difficult to get information from her until I decided to come to Francistown to find out what was going on”
The Briton said when he arrived in Botswana, his girlfriend had just purchased a brand new Ford Ranger worth P440, 000. “She was cold. There was no intimacy and she acted as if she wanted to get rid of me. It was at that moment that I realised that the relationship was over.”
Robertson then reported the matter to the police as he was worried his life savings had been misused.
The investigating officer Detective Boitumelo Nalebomo told court that upon their investigations they discovered Ndlovu had lied to the unsuspecting Robertson, falsely telling him that she owned a residential plot in Tati Siding.
“There are no such records at Tati Landboard. In fact there are only documents submitted for change of ownership and the purchase of the plot. The defendant admitted in her statement that she used the money sent by Robertson to purchase the plot, which is yet to be changed into her names as she still has an outstanding balance,” revealed the Detective.
Nalebomo further stated that when they began their investigation, Ndlovu’s bank account had a balance of P380, 000, which she was ordered by court not to spend.
It was an order Ndlovu ignored, going on a spending spree that left her account with just P1, 257.
The judge said “The defendant is precluded from advancing any defence in the matter and against the applicant until she has restored the sum of P380,000 into the bank account.”
On hearing this, Ndlovu, who had been sitting quietly on one of the court’s front benches, promptly got up and left the room. She was further interdicted and restrained from disposing of the Ford Ranger, and ordered to park it at the applicant’s attorney’s office pending the judgement.
Ndlovu was also ordered to surrender title documents for the Tati Siding plot and pay costs of the application on attorney.
The former couple are due back in court on 7 February 2019.