Wedding dress 'trapped' inside invaded Zim farmhouse

2015-05-14 17:54

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Harare - A court in Harare has ordered invaders to move off a farm in Harare where a woman's wedding dress was left inside a house.

Richard and Molleen Dennis were forced to leave the home they rent on Caledonia Farm on the outskirts of Harare last week, spokesperson for the SADC Tribunal Rights Watch Ben Freeth told News24 on Thursday.

The couple was not allowed to take anything with them. That included their daughter Nikita's wedding dress, Freeth said.

She is understood to be getting married in a few months' time.

Her wedding invitations are also still inside the family home, Freeth said.

Richard Dennis, who was asleep when the invaders arrived on May 5, was forced to leave the house half-dressed. He wasn't even allowed to put a T-shirt on.

"They came into his bedroom. The first thing he knew about it was when he woke up to find a golf club brandished over his head. He couldn't even get his wallet or his money," Freeth said.

The farm appears to have been taken over by a Zanu-PF-linked "housing consortium" which has been inviting people to register for plots on which to build homes.

A ruling party candidate in a parliamentary by-election set for next month, Mavis Gumbo, held a rally on Saturday at the farm. She promised people that she would do "everything" to make sure they were given plots.

It's believed that as many as 5 000 people have now moved onto the land.

Lawyer David Drury told News24 in a telephone interview: "The court has granted interim relief restoring use and occupation of Caledonia to the lawful claimants."

Drury said he had tried to go to the farm on Friday. "I could not get onto the property," he said.

The court order compels the invaders to remove their chains and padlocks and provides for the sheriff to ensure they are evicted.

Read more on:    zimbabwe  |  southern africa
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