Court stops businesswoman’s Hwange coal mine raids

Source: Court stops businesswoman’s Hwange coal mine raids – The Standard

THE Bulawayo High Court has blocked a Harare businesswoman from seizing coke from a Chinese-owned mining company in Hwange until a dispute over the payment of security services she was providing the firm is resolved.

Gutai Lisa-Marie Maropafadzo, is accused of collecting about 700 tonnes of coke worth US$300 000 from Hwange Coal Gasification Company (HCGC) in the company of thugs and police officers.


Maropafadzo is alleged to have claimed that seizing the coke was part of an agreement she reached with the company in December last year for the provision of security services.

Coke is a residue of coal and is used as a fuel as well as a reducing agent in smelting iron ore in a blast furnace.

Maropafadzo, who has been previously linked to a multi-million-dollar scandal that rocked Cottco, is said to have told HCGC officials during the raids that she was untouchable.

She claimed to be untouchable after allegedly name-dropping Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) commissioner general Godwin Matanga and the presidency while seizing the coke.

Police later disowned her before warning Zimbabweans from  from name-dropping to commit crimes.

Maropafadzo pounced at the firm after  obtaining  a provisional High Court order number HCBC/371/24 on February 20, 2024 permitting her to access 700 tonnes of coke.

However, HCGC filed an application for rescission of judgement that granted her permission to remove and transport the coke from the company.

The company also filed an urgent chamber application at the Bulawayo High Court to stop her from collecting the coke.

The company cited Maropafadzo as the respondent in the matter.

On February 28, Bulawayo High Court Judge Justice Christopher Dube-Banda ruled in favour of HCGC.

HCGC sought stay of execution of court order number HCBC/371/24.

“The respondent shall at her own cost return or cause to be returned to the applicant all volumes of coke, which she removed or caused to be removed from the applicant’s premises on the basis of the order in HCBC/371/24,” HCGC submitted.

“Respondent, her agents, proxies and privies shall not enter upon the premises of the applicant or remove any coke therefrom until there is a determination on the merits of the application in HCBC/371/24.”

The company said Maropafadzo  must be made to pay costs of the proceedings on the scale of the legal practitioner and client.

In his ruling, Justice Dube-Banda said it is common cause that a writ was issued under HCBC 371/24.

“A writ must follow the terms of the court order and for this reason the execution must be stayed,” the judge ruled.

“Again, the fact that a writ has been issued shows that the order has all the hallmarks of a final order.

“I hold the view that, generally, a provisional order cannot be executable.

“The applicant submitted that it has a bona fide defence to the relief sought in HCBC 371/24.”

He said the applicant alleged forgery and contends that whatever 10 HB 30/24 HCBC 389/24 agreements exist is with a company not with the respondent in her own stead, and hence she cannot seek to enforce it outside the company.

HCGC has also written to the police complaining about Maropafadzo’s actions and the alleged apparent support she got from police officers during the raids.