Head­mas­ter, mag­is­trate in main­te­nance court spat

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - National News - Cyn­thia Dube

A SEEM­INGLY ag­i­tated Bu­l­awayo mag­is­trate, Mwanase Musi­iwa, yes­ter­day or­dered a Binga head­mas­ter to va­cate the main­te­nance court af­ter he had told the ju­di­cial of­fi­cer that his rul­ing was un­fair.

Mar­cus Chitswa, a Pu­mula South sub­urb res­i­dent ap­plied for a down­ward vari­a­tion or­der from $150 to $70 in monthly main­te­nance pay­ments.

The court heard that the head­mas­ter is in main­te­nance ar­rears amount­ing to $1 000 af­ter he was dragged to court by his ex-wife Rose­mary Sibanda.

Chitswa, who said he is a sec­ondary school head­mas­ter in Binga and earns $420 per month, ar­gued that he was mar­ried and had two other chil­dren he was look­ing af­ter.

The mag­is­trate granted Chitswa’s ap­pli­ca­tion, but turned down his re­quest to lift a gar­nishee or­der.

Mr Musi­iwa told him that each month he had to pay an ad­di­tional $20 to clear his ar­rears to bring the to­tal amount he was sup­posed to fork out to $90. This did not go down well with the head­mas­ter. Chitswa com­plained say­ing the amount was too much, and it would have been bet­ter if the mag­is­trate had re­moved the gar­nishee or­der. He told the mag­is­trate that his rul­ing was un­fair. Chitswa protested that his rights were be­ing vi­o­lated as both par­ents have a re­spon­si­bil­ity to sup­port their chil­dren, but the mag­is­trate was treat­ing him as if he was the only one who was sup­posed to con­trib­ute to the up­keep of their chil­dren.

Mr Musi­iwa looked ag­i­tated, re­moved his spec­ta­cles and said “May you please leave the court if you are not com­fort­able with my or­der. You can go and ap­peal at the High Court rather than be­ing busy ar­gu­ing. You are wast­ing my time, and there are other peo­ple out­side who want to be served.”

Chitswa left the court­room, but re­turned shortly af­ter­wards to ask if the mag­is­trate had con­sid­ered that he was a bread win­ner in his fam­ily be­fore grant­ing the or­der.

“My wor­ship may you please con­sider my re­spon­si­bil­i­ties. I look af­ter my mother who is ter­mi­nally ill and crip­pled. As I am talk­ing now she is on a wheel chair and re­cently I took a loan to pay her hos­pi­tal bills. I also pay med­i­cal aid and funeral pol­icy for my fam­ily in­clud­ing the re­spon­dent’s child. I am also study­ing at Lu­pane State Univer­sity,” he said.

The mag­is­trate re­sponded say­ing: “Get out!”— @ cyn­thi­amthembo1.

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