Zimbabwe: Makamba Elbows Out War Vets in Telecel Shareholding Row

30 October 2019

Telecoms business mogul, James Makamba has scored victory against war veterans who were claiming 24 percent shareholding in mobile communications firm, Telecel Zimbabwe (Private) Limited.

High Court judge, Edith Mushore dismissed a challenge by a war veterans-based organisation Magamba Echimurenga Housing Trust before she slapped them with costs.

"Whereupon, after reading documents filed of record and hearing counsel, it is ordered that: application be and is hereby dismissed with costs on an attorney client scale," Mushore ruled.

Magamba Echimurenga Housing Trust, claimed to own 24 percent shareholding in Empowerment Corporation (Private) Limited, the indigenous group that owns shares in Telecel Zimbabwe.

Makamba, his company Kestrel Corporation (Private) Limited, Empowerment Corporation (Private) Limited, Jane Mutasa, Indigenous Business Women's Organisation, Selpon Investments (Private) Limited, Carlton Consultancy (Private) Limited, lawyer Gerald Mlotshwa, Telecel and former Information Communication Technology and Cyber Security minister Supa Mandiwanzira were cited as respondents in an application by the war veterans Trust.

In their application, Magamba Echimurenga said the government of Zimbabwe fostered a thrust to empower its citizens through an indigenisation economic policy.

They said it was their privilege to take part in the creation of Telecel.

The companies that formed part of the business included Kestrel Corporation, the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association led by the late Chenjerai Hunzvi, Jane Mutasa's Indigenous Business Women's Organisation, Leo Mugabe's Integrated Engineering Group and the Phillip Chiyangwa's Affirmative Action Group (AAG), among other entities.

The court heard indigenous groups responded to the government quest for indigenisation of the economy in 1997 and these acted as promoters for the birth of the Empowerment Corporation (Private) Limited.

In response, the respondents had said, "Definitely, the applicant has adopted the wrong procedure to achieve its intention. The present application should be struck off if not dismissed for being unprocedural."

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