‘Court has no jurisdiction to entertain Redeption Ministries land battle’
High Court Judge John Magagula yesterday ordered that the court had no jurisdiction to hear the civil matter that was brought under a certificate of urgency.
Fakudze had sought an order interdicting and restraining Kuhlase who had been cited as the first respondent from erecting any structure at apieceoflandatKa-DedaareaunderVelezizweni Umphakatsi.
The was also seeking an order of court interdicting and restraining Sfondi Mavimbela and the Velezizweni Umphakatsi from holding meetings and allocating land to anyone under Ka-Deda Umphakatsi.
According to Fakudze in his papers filed before court, this was an application in which he sought to vindicate his right and authority as the chief of Ka-Deda area which is constantly undermined by Sfondi Mavimbela.
Having instructed lawyer Sifiso Nhlabatsi from TR Maseko Attorneys, Fakudze submitted that under normal circumstances he would have instructed the attorney general but due to the fact that the office of the Attorney General is sometimes conflicted, he had to go for Nhlabatsi.
He had submitted that the areas of Ka-Deda and Velezizweni are adjacent but under different traditional authorities and as stated, he is the incumbent chief of Ka-Deda arguing that despite that he is the lawful authority of the area, the second respondent (Mavimbela) constantly undermined his authority by allocating land at Ka-Deda yet had no authority to do so as his area of jurisdiction is Velezizweni.
“To this end the second respodnent has allocated land to the first respodnent (Kuhlase) without my knowledge and consent, this action is unlawful and if it continues unabated it will lead to anarchy,” Fakudze submitted.
Fakudze stated that the matter was reported to the Ludzidzini Council which made a ruling in 2015 but despite that ruling the second respondent continued to undermine his authority, he then approached the fifth respondent (the AG) for legal counsel since the matter had been dealt with by traditional structures.
The AG further wrote a letter to the Royal Eswatini Police Service (REPS) requesting that they assist in effecting the order issued by the Ludzidzini Council but despite all these attempts the second respodnent (Mavimbela) continued to undermine his (Fakudze) authority as he recently allocated land under Ka-Deda for a grocery shop.
The High Court yesterday distanced itself from hearing an urgent application filed by the Redeption Ministries Church where it is challenging the Nduma Royal Kraal in a land dispute.
High Court Judge John Magagula yesterday threw out the application that had been filed by the church stating the court had no jurisdiction to entertain the matter.
“Having read both papers and heard both counsel, the court issues an order in terms of the following, the application is dismissed as the court has no jurisdiction to hear the matter,” Judge Magagula ordered.
The church situated at Motshane had taken Nakani Mkhonta and the Nduma Royal Kraal (umphakatsi) tocourtwhereitwasseeking amongst others an order interdicting and restraining anyone acting under the authorityofMkhontaandumphakatsi from dismantling and destroying the churches structure.
They were also seeking an order interdicting and restraining anyone undertheauthorityofthefirstrespodnent (Mkhonta) and the second respodnent (umphakatsi) from intefering with or disrupting the church services.
The church was also seeking an order interdicting and restraining anyone acting under the authority of the respondents from removing the church fence or any other assets belonging to the church and that the members of the Royal Eswatini Police Service (REPS) must enforce and ensure that the order is complied with.
According to an affidavit filed by one of the church elders Sibusiso Ndwandwe,sometimearoundMarch 2018 members of the church including himself at Motjane under the Nduma Royal Kraal, khontaed and duly paid the customary dues in accordance with the Siswati Law and Custom. He submitted that the khonta process was done by members of the church to solicit the land for and on behalf of the applicant (church). Ndwandwe submitted that during the process of khonta they were welcomed by Princess Salaphi Shongwe along with the libandla of the area who advised that the land allocated to the church was designated for churches, adding that the areawasaccordinglymarked through the customary kupopha lifindvo. However whilst they were clearing the land allegedly allocated to them, Ndwandwe submitted that a group of men approached them claiming to be from indlunkhulu (royal kraal) and demanded to know as to who had given the church the land in question. “The group of men further advised and invited us to go to the Nduma Royal kraal so that the issue could be deliberated. Upon arrivalattheumphakatsiweenquired from the princess if she was aware of the invite and she informed us to proceed with the land clearing as she had allocated the land to us and anyonewithaproblemshouldaddress it to her,” Ndwandwe submitted.
He submitted in his papers that they then proceeded with the construction of the church until it was completed.