ZIFA CHALLENGES GARNISHEE ORDER | Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA) is challenging the recent court order garnishing its bank account to recover $24 000 it owes The Travel Bureau Private Limited.
In late July, Justice Priscila Chigumba granted the default judgment in favour of The Travel Bureau, which did not go down well with the national soccer body. Through its lawyers, Mutamangira and Associates, ZIFA has filed an application to rescind the garnishee order, saying it was granted in error.
In his founding affidavit, ZIFA chief executive officer Mr Joseph Mamutse, argued that the default judgment was granted despite that the soccer body had timeously filed its opposing papers.
“I humbly submit that the applicant duly and timeously filed its notice of opposition to first respondent’s application (for garnishee order) in case number 5540 /17,” reads the affidavit.
“The default judgment granted by Honourable Justice Chigumba on the 26th of July 2017 was erroneously granted in the absence of applicant.”
Mr Mamutse indicated that he was surprised to read in the Press that a default judgement had been issued. He said the travel agent acted unlawfully by seeking default judgment in a case that was being opposed.
“I am advised that it is impermissible for any applicant to seek default judgment in circumstances where a respondent formally opposes an application within the time period prescribed by the Rules of Court,” said Mr Mamutse.
To seek default judgment in such circumstances amounts to snatching judgment.” The travel agency got an order empowering it to attach all funds that are deposited into Zifa’s two bank accounts with Steward Bank until clearance of the outstanding debt.
Steward Bank, in terms of the order granted, is compelled to transfer all funds that find their way into the Zifa accounts to Negona Transport’s account with NMB Bank.
The bank accounts are the ones that receive among others, Premier Soccer League earnings. The debt in question arose from unpaid airfares, which the Travel Bureau paid for the national soccer team to travel to Cameroon sometime back.
Zifa paid part of the debt and left a balance of $24 263,50. The court has since ordered Zifa to pay the debt, but there has been no compliance.