Sello 'Chicco' Twala in office-rent row

2013-08-11 10:00

The sheriff of a Joburg court has attached office furniture belonging to musician-turned-businessman Sello “Chicco” Twala to recoup the rent he owes his landlord.

Octostar (Pty) Limited dragged Twala to the Randburg Magistrates’ Court after he refused to pay them more than R23?000 for office space. His office furniture was attached two weeks ago – on the day the order was issued.

Twala must now appear before the magistrate tomorrow to explain why the order should not be finalised.

In another twist, however, Twala obtained a protection order against his landlord Nick Katsaatas, claiming he threatened him and his customers.

He also alleges that Katsaatas was racist because he refurbished all the white tenants’ offices – and not his.

The sheriff seized Twala’s laptop, printer, desks, chairs, couches, boxes of DVDs and even the office fridge and microwave, worth a combined R30?000.

Katsaatas told City Press he obtained the order because Twala tried to remove his goods from the building without paying rent.

He also dismissed Twala’s claim of racism, saying he has more black tenants than white and refurbished many of their offices.

“I have been trying to have a meeting with (Twala) but he kept on ignoring my calls. Eventually, I found him in the building and asked if we could talk about this matter, but he said ‘f**k you’ to me,” Katsaatas said.

But Twala offered a different story in his protection-order application.

“His reason is that I refused to pay an additional R13?000 that he was charging me because he was not providing services.

“I advised him to abide by the lease agreement that we have signed and not use vulgar (language) and threats if he has a problem with me, but he continues to harass me and my staff in the office,” he said.

Twala refuses to move out.

“My offices were not refurbished and redemarcated according to my needs, but when I moved to the storeroom he renovated them and put in nice furniture for white people who occupied them,” he said.

“I pay him R4?500 for cleaning services, but look how dirty this storeroom and parking bays are. Look how clean and neat the office and parking bays of white tenants are. I’m being treated like this because I’m black. (President Jacob) Zuma must do something about this. We are being treated like visitors in our own country.”

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