Mathew Masinge, Court Reporter
Masvingo businessman Rozva Mushinyi is suing his uncle Ben Mushinyi for $1 million after alleged defamation statements were uttered at a recent family gathering in Bikita recently.
The two had previously shared differences over the holding of a tombstone unveiling ceremony for the late Alex Mushinyi who was Rozva’s father.
According to papers before the court, Rozva is claiming that his uncle labelled him ‘a child of a whore’ at the gathering that he had organised in his absence.
Rozva had obtained an interdict to stop the ritual before the alleged statements were made public.
He said the statement was extremely defamatory and attacked his personality in front of more than 100 people.
“On 17 August 2021, in Nyahunda village Bikita, Ben Mushinyi uttered defamatory, dehumanizing and degrading utterances about me at a gathering that he had organized.
“He uttered the words that ‘mwana wehure’ meaning that ‘I am a child of a whore’ and that ‘ndiri benzi’ (I am not mentally stable).
“I am a businessman and have dignity and respect of the communities around me and in Bikita in my area of provenance, my father was born, bred, built his homestead there and was buried there along with his parents,” reads the claim.
Rozva said he was pained by his uncle’s actions.
“I am an executor of my late father colonel Alex George Mushinyi who died recently.
“The utterances by Ben amount to a publication in that they were said at a very public gathering which had also been organized by the perpetrators.
“I was pained till today and I am a laughing stock in Bikita and whenever the story has been told,” added Rozva in the summons.
The businessman also feels his uncle’s utterances must be dismissed by the courts.
“Ben’s conduct is deplorable and this court should discourage it by awarding costs on a legal practitioner client scale.
“He had the intention of defaming me he did it without being verbally attacked by anyone.
“This is extremely defamation and degrading given the fact my late mother was never a whore and the stigma that arises from such labelling of myself at a gathering of more than 100 people and in my absence but the presence of my employee and my legal practitioners and a police man who was serving provisional interdict against Ben and his allies from conducting a ritual dubbed tombstone unveiling on my late father’s grave,” he said.