Former VP Mphoko Escalates US$1,5m Lawsuit Against Welshman Ncube To High Court

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By Staff Reporter

FORMER Vice-President Phelekezela Mphoko and his son Siqokoqela have escalated their fight to recover about US$1,5 million from their former lawyer Welshman Ncube, with the matter set to be heard at the High Court on a date yet be advised.

The Mphokos are accusing Ncube of failing to remit the money he received on their behalf from Choppies Enterprises Limited where they were co-directors.

Court papers reveal that a pre-trial conference was held at the Bulawayo High Court on Tuesday, but no agreement was reached despite Ncube confirming that he received the money.

“Take notice that the parties in this matter convened a meeting on March 27 and agreed on a joint pre-trial conference memorandum as follows: In what currency was the sum of US$2,9 million disbursed by Choppies to defendant (Ncube), whether the amount for legal fees was $400 000 or $200 000, did the plaintiffs instruct and authorise defendant to pay the total amount of $1 955 571 to Future Muvirimi?, Is there any portion of the settlement amount due to plaintiffs that defendant has not paid to plaintiffs and if so how much?  Who should pay costs of suit and on what scale?,” part of a joint pre-trial conference memorandum filed by Mphokos’ lawyers reads.

Mphoko is suing Ncube for allegedly “neglecting” to transfer nearly US$1,5 million, part of an amount awarded to him and Siqokoqela after a protracted ownership wrangle over retailer Choppies Enterprises Ltd.

Mphoko and his son sold their shares in Choppies Enterprises for US$2,9 million (R43m), in a deal finalised in 2019.

In their suit, the Mphokos argue that since the deal’s conclusion, the former Vice-President received US$517 500, while his son got US$730 219 — leaving a balance of about US$1,5 million which they claim was being held by Ncube.