Phillip Chiyangwa stands as one of Zimbabwe’s largest property developers and recently stated that his empire is worth far more than the speculated US$15 million.
This in itself is not a problem, however the Bible-bashing tycoon cannot claim he has made his millions of US dollars from anything but illicit trade.
He is currently on a mission to grab as much land as possible in the urban areas of Harare, most of it State or council land. This is land invasion under a different guise.
The Borrowdale greenbelt council-owned land has been reported as “claimed” by Chiyangwa and he denies any wrongdoing.
The picture above were taken very recently and depict the disputed Borrowdale vlei. The workers camped there claim Phillip Chiyangwa owns the land and they are getting ready to put down boreholes. They could not produce any papers to prove Chiyangwa’s ownership.
This greenbelt is the water catchment for Mazoe dam.
In September this year we wrote about the building boom going on in Harare in a post titled
The fat-cats are busy building before things go bust. We wrote:
On the Borrowdale Road, Targon Construction is busy bulldozing and clearing virgin land to build there. In normal circumstances a billboard would be erected outlining the project, the partners and giving the council details, but no such board is in place.
This land is meant to be designated green belt, but that has never worried the fat cat chefs in our country.
Indeed, this particular bit of green belt is the catchment area for the Mazoe River – development should never be allowed so as to protect this fragile environment, especially considering the dire water conditions in Harare.
When the City council valuator was called about the project, he emphatically stated that no permission has been given for it. He claimed that his department had sent a letter denying permission to the developers.
Targo Construction is owned by Supa Mandiwanzira who is apparently being backed by Phillip Chiyangwa. Both, are close relatives of Robert Mugabe, with Supa married to Grace Mugabe’s sister while Chiyangwa is the uncle of the Zimbabwean dictator.
Ballantyne Park residents in Harare have demanded an investigation into a “suspicious” land transfer deal involving the city council and maverick businessman Phillip Chiyangwa. The transfer deal could open a can of worms over various projects and deals that were pushed through Town House before the new council assumed office on July 1 last year, council officials have warned.
Information to hand shows that Chiyangwa, through his Kilima Investments (Pvt) Ltd, swapped a 25-hectare piece of land in Derbyshire on the outskirts of Harare with five smaller pieces of land in the capital.
The five pieces of land are listed as Stand 65 Colne Valley Township of Lot 7A Colne Valley, which covers Ballantyne Park.
Although the Deed of Transfer indicates that “the said piece of land shall be used as a public place only”, it is understood Chiyangwa has already moved to develop a 7,5ha piece of prime land into a residential property.
Some of the properties in the deal were registered on May 22 this year, more than a year after the transaction authorised by the commission then running the affairs of Harare.
“We have seen sales representatives from Kilima Investments who are already selling stands on that piece of land, which is supposed to be a public place,” said one resident.
The commercial director of Chiyangwa’s Native Investments Africa Group, Nigel Munyati, asked to have questions e-mailed to him. He however did not respond to the questions, saying they were “malicious.”
Munyati wrote back: “Reference is made to your e-mail enquiry below. Our lawyers have advised that your questions have malice and that you should direct them to the City of Harare. Please note that in this matter our rights are reserved.”
On Friday evening Chiyangwa was breathing fire over the enquiry and attempted to stop this reporter from writing the article.
“There is no story. Where did you get my papers from, you have fake papers,” fumed Chiyangwa.
“What right do you have to ask me about my business? . . .What power do you have to be asking me about my companies? Go and jump in the river. Never phone me or my companies again. . .”
Among other things, Munyati had been asked to clarify the reasons for swapping more than 25ha for much smaller plots within the same city, and the benefits the deal was likely to give to the city and the people living around the five land properties being swapped.
Copies of the Deed of Transfer show that the transfer was approved by the commission running the City of Harare in December 2007, but the documents were processed this year.
Harare Mayor Muchadeyi Masunda said he does not have any knowledge of the transfer.
“A lot of people from Ballantyne Park have been phoning me over the last two weeks,” Masunda said.
“There is no such transaction that was authorised by my council. We need to consult our professional advisors to rectify the situation.
Masunda said the transaction could have been “one of so many things that were pushed through, especially during the period between 30 March and 30 June” last year, pending the swearing in of duly elected councillors.
He said the council “cannot sit back and allow a nullity”. Psychology Chiwanga, the city’s director of Urban Planning, was not immediately available. (Zvakwana and The Standard)