The High Court has issued an interdict to stop the late Genius Kadungure’s lawyer Patricia Darangwa from administering the former’s estate.
The decision follows an urgent chamber application by the Kadungure family-led by his sister Juliet to stop Darangwa from acting as Ginimbi estate’s executrix.
The family claimed that the will was neither attested to by Ginimbi nor signed for them to accept it. Justice Sylvia Chirawu-Mugomba said the family’s rights must be protected.
“Even if the court finds on the return date that the document should be taken as a will, their rights must be protected,” ruled Justice Chirawu-Mugomba.
The judge ordered Darangwa to stop acting on behalf of Ginimbi. “Darangwa be and hereby interdicted from administering the estate of the late Genius Kadungure under DR No 1771/2o.
“The Master of the High Court be and is hereby interdicted from accepting any process in relation to the administration of the estate of the late Genius Kadungure under DR No. 1771/2o filed by or on behalf of Darangwa.
“Darangwa be and is hereby interdicted from presenting the letters of administration issued to her in Zimbabwe under DR No.1771/20 to the Master of the High Court in the Republic of South Africa for purposes of the administration of the deceased’s estate in relation to assets in that country.
“The Registrar of the High Court of Zimbabwe in Harare is directed to expedite the return date hearing,” reads the judgment.
The judge said her decision was inevitable since the disputed document failed to meet all formalities. “It is therefore inevitable that the merits of the final order sought be considered.
It is my considered view that the basis of the whole matter revolves around the crucial issue of the acceptance of a document that did not meet all the formalities as specified in s8 (1) (a-d) of the Wills Act as the will of the deceased.
“This includes writing, signing and attestation. Section 8(5) therefore becomes an exception to the norm in that it gives
the Master of the High Court has the power to accept a document that does not meet some of the formalities.
“That section in my view seeks to create a balance between being overly rigorous to the extent that it may prejudice beneficiaries in instances where it is dear that indeed the deceased wanted their estate to be dealt with in a particular manner but failed to comply fully s8(i) and potentially fraudulent documents being touted as wills,” reads the judgment.
Ginimbi died in a car crash on November 8 last year.
The family is challenging the authenticity of the document, which they claim is imprecise and not dated. The court also found that the family has a substantial and real interest in this matter and have a right to arrest the illegality that aggravates the deceased’s estate at the behest of Darangwa for their prejudice.
They are accordingly within their rights to approach the court. On the merits, the family feared that they were exposed since Darangwa did not furnish any monetary security for the faithful administration of Ginimbi’s estate.
During lockdown, when the family thought that everything was at a standstill, Darangwa tried to dispose of one of Ginimbi’s vehicles, a Lamborghini to his friend Kit Kat.
In her defence, Darangwa claimed she had met Ginimbi in October last year before his untimely death days later. “She met the deceased in early October 2020. Darangwa and the deceased had a meeting at the deceased’s will writing and estate planning, among other issues.
“Ginimbi proceeded to give Darangwa instructions on what to include in his will. They met on October 27, to discuss the draft will.
The socialite was happy with the content of the will. “Ginimbi indicated that he wanted his friend ‘Kit Kat’, who is a resident in South Africa, to be a witness to the will.
“He indicated that he was waiting for him to come to Zimbabwe whereupon he would sign the will. “Darangwa and Ginimbi agreed to meet on the loth of November, 2020 when Kit Kat would be in Zimbabwe and he would sign the will,” argued Darangwa’s lawyer.