Desperate home seekers scammed by notorious couple in Crowhill farmland scam

DStv

A famous couple previously convicted and jailed for fraud, Florence (née Behane) Pambukani and Felix Pambukani, have once again been implicated in a scheme to deceive desperate housing seekers at Crowhill Farm in Harare.

The couple have allegedly posed as the legal owners of land belonging to Crowhill Private Limited, leading many unsuspecting people to part with their hard-earned money. The disputed property, Chirika Extension of Borrowdale Estate, covers 121.4029 hectares and is legally held under a transfer deed.

Despite a High Court order issued in 2021 by Justice Webster Chinamora, which was later upheld by the Supreme Court, prohibiting the Pambukani from selling the land, the couple continued their fraudulent activities. According to court documents, the High Court ordered the eviction of all squatters, but those who had purchased the land from the Pambukanis resisted the eviction order, leading to a clash.

Crowhill Farm has been proactive and has given affected people letters inviting them to regularize their situation or face eviction. However, the activities of the Pambukanis have left many land seekers in a desperate situation, having lost significant sums of money.

A legal occupant of Crowhill Farm told the Pambukanis’ fraud story: “I met the Pambukanis after they were convicted of fraud for defrauding Lonrho Zimbabwe and served eight years in prison each. “After their release, they came to Acorn Farm desperately looking for a position and we helped them.”

The resident further explained the couple’s underhanded tactics: “In 2017, Florence attempted to run in the Acorn Farm leadership election, but we banned her due to her criminal record. She secretly approached Dr Msipa to form the Acorn Municipality Development Association but it was all for her and her husband to gain financially.”

“The Pambukanis own a simple stall, a small fraction of the Cleverhill Estate, far from where they sell and rent to unsuspecting people. Their corresponding position, number 720, is clearly marked on the map,” he added.

Efforts to contact the Pambukanis for comment were unsuccessful as their phones were unreachable at the time of publication.

The couple have also been accused of claiming to have close connections to senior government officials and have a history of evicting farmers from their land. Last year, they allegedly hired armed thugs to attack workers at Wakefield Farm in Area 5 of Selous, a property they attempted to seize from its owner, Kenneth Bartholomew. The farm workers suffered serious injuries and some are still receiving treatment at Chegutu Hospital.

The Pambukanis’ takeover of Wakefield Farm led to the eviction of 35 families, including children and the elderly, despite Bartholomew having written approval from the Minister for Agriculture to remain on his farm.

In 2008, the couple also illegally took over Scotsdale Farm, leading to the death of its rightful owner, Kobus Joubert, in 2010. Following Joubert’s eviction, all farm workers were displaced, leaving them homeless after years of employment. in the farm.

FCB