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Land Dispute Sparks Outrage at Rutope Business Center In Musana, Bindura

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BINDURA – The community of Rutope Business Center, also known as Musiiwa in the Bindura Rural District Council, was thrown into turmoil on May 13th, 2024, when a dramatic land dispute unfolded in front of bewildered onlookers.

According to the Bindura Eye, Rumbidzai Kwaramba, the widow of the late Chamunorwa Kwaramba from Chandavengerwa Village under Chief Musana, awoke to find her mother-in-law, Cecilia Kamumvuri, measuring the stand she had occupied for the past 20 years. Cecilia, accompanied by a potential buyer and a group of intimidating bodyguards, intended to sell the land.

When Rumbidzai confronted them, the buyer and his entourage, which included eight male bouncers and one female, threatened her with violence. The commotion attracted a large crowd of locals, including the area’s Councillor, Mr. Kumbirayi Musopero.

Boasting about his connections, the buyer claimed, “War is ended by war, you don’t have anything to do to us. My father is a senior soldier and a war veteran too. He is the one who has sent us to grab this land. You will not do anything to us.”

In 2004, Chamunorwa Kwaramba, Cecilia’s third-born son, was allocated the land by his parents. He developed the plot, constructing a five-roomed house, a fowl run, toilets, and a bathroom. After his death in 2016, his widow, Rumbidzai, and their daughter continued to live there.

Cecilia’s attempts to sell the land had previously been thwarted by her husband, Remiggio Kwaramba, and legal interventions. Following Remiggio’s death in January 2024, Cecilia revived her plans, reportedly selling the 2,000 square meter stand for US$2,000.

Upon noticing the erection of a security fence around her home, Rumbidzai sought help from Village Head Roy Kwaramba, Cecilia’s son, who referred her to Herdman Chikosha for mediation. Despite initially ruling in Rumbidzai’s favor, Herdman Chikosha later persuaded her to accept the sale, adding to her distress.

The situation escalated when Cecilia loudly declared that all relevant authorities had been paid off to facilitate the land sale. “You will not do anything to stop this man from taking over this land because he has paid US $300 to the Herdman, US $200 to the Village Head and gave me my $1500. There is nowhere you can take the issue to,” she boasted.

Herdman Chikosha denied involvement in the sale, stating, “We do not allow selling land here in Musana. The lady told me that she was not selling but was giving the land to one of her nephews. I am surprised to hear that she sold the land.”

Attempts to get a comment from Village Head Roy Kwaramba were unsuccessful as he was unavailable and did not return calls.

Rumbidzai, feeling victimized and powerless, is appealing to women’s rights organizations for support. “As you can see, they are victimizing me, selling my home because they know that I am a widow. I don’t have any powers to fight them. It is my appeal to organizations that represent women, especially widows, to come to my rescue,” she said.

This incident highlights the ongoing challenges faced by widows in Zimbabwe, who often become targets of exploitation in property disputes. The community of Rutope Business Center remains watchful, hoping for a resolution that upholds justice and protects the rights of vulnerable individuals.