By Mary Taruvinga
MDC vice president Tendai Biti has won a case against former Zanu PF MP and now top party official Kudakwashe Basikiti who had reportedly been evading paying legal fees to the Harare lawyer and politician.
Bhasikiti, once Masvingo Provincial Affairs Minister under President Robert Mugabe’s now defunct regime, joined his former rivals after being stampeded out of the ruling party in 2014.
He was appointed to the MDC’s national executive early this month by party leader Nelson Chamisa.
Biti claimed he had an agreement with Bhasikiti in which the latter was supposed to pay $12 000 in legal fees.
According to the court papers, Biti said in 2015 and 2016, he rendered “complicated legal services” to Bhasikiti.
The services consisted of High Court, Supreme Court and Constitutional Court applications.
Biti, also former Finance Minister, later presented an invoice to Bhasikiti for services rendered but the latter failed or ignored to pay.
In his declaration filed with the High Court, Biti said: “Pursuant to this, the plaintiff (Tendai Biti) and the defendant (Kudakwashe Bhasikiti) agreed on a fee of US$12 000 excluding posts, petties and VAT.
“On December 13, 2016 the plaintiff levied a fee note to the defendant…despite demand and despite numerous promises, defendant has failed and neglected to pay the outstanding amount.”
High Court Judge, Benjamin Cikowero heard the matter in his chambers on June 7, 2019 and ruled in Biti’s favour.
“After reading documents filed of record, it is ordered that: the defendant (Bhasikiti) shall pay to the plaintiff (Biti) the sum of $15 180, the defendant shall pay interest on the above amount at the rate of 5% from the date of judgment to the date of full and final payment plus costs of suit,” Justice Chikowero said.
Bhasikiti will also pay the costs of the lawsuit.