Madiba’s Qunu home is just the beginning – Winnie’s lawyer

2014-10-15 08:35

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Winnie Madikizela-Mandela’s lawyer has indicated that the struggle veteran and ANC MP was mounting a serious legal battle over the assets of her ex-husband and late former president Nelson Mandela.

In an exclusive interview with City Press shortly after filing the court papers at the Mthatha High Court yesterday, lawyer Mvuzo Notyesi hinted that “more was still to come”.

“Now we just want to deal with the issue of the house and get that matter out of the way. This is just the beginning. There are still many issues to be interrogated and challenged regarding assets of the late former state president. We are not challenging the will as such, Notyesi said.

He did not want to divulge what their next move would be, only saying they would wait for the seven respondents in the matter of the Qunu home to make their submissions.

There are seven respondents listed in the court papers: the estate’s executors, the Mthatha deeds registrar, the minister of land affairs, the president, the Nelson Mandela Family Trust, the master of the South Gauteng High Court and Graça Machel

In the papers, Madikizela-Mandela says she wants the court to grant an order to review and set aside the decision of the third and fourth respondents – the minister of land affairs, the president – to issue a deed of grant in respect of the land described as “Lot KwamaDiba” in Qunu “in favour of Mr Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela”.

She demands that the Qunu property be handed over to her as “the person entitled [to] possession and enjoyment thereof, including immovable property therein”.

Also, she wants to be declared, along with the children from Madiba’s first marriage to Evelyn Mase, and generations born out of her own marriage to Madiba, to be entitled to possession and ownership of the Qunu home.

Madikizela-Mandela does not mention what role Madiba’s widow, Machel, or her children should play in the ownership of the Qunu property.

In his last will and testament, Madiba bequeathed his Qunu property and his movable assets of his estate to the Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela Family Trust.

“It is my wish that trustees of the trust administer the Qunu property for the benefit of the Mandela family and my third wife and her two children, Malengane Machel and Josina Machel. The Qunu home should be used by my family in perpetuity in order to preserve the unity of the Mandela family,” read an extract from Madiba’s will.

Madikizela-Mandela has indicated she would use an affidavit from AbaThembu king Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo to support her application.

Dalindyebo has already made public statements that she acquired the site from him while Madiba was in jail.

Read: Winnie entitled to Madiba’s Qunu home, says Dalindyebo

She would also rely on her own affidavit and that of Professor Wandile Kuse, a retired professor and expert in family structures in South Africa. Kuse’s affidavit says that, during a visit to Victor Verster prison, Mandela had told him that Madikizela-Mandela was looking for a site in Qunu.

Madikizela-Mandela has given the respondents 30 days to file answering affidavits or she would approach the court for the order to be made final.

She also argues that the registration of the property under Madiba’s name was unlawful to begin with.

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