Tenant sues landlord for defamation of character

A Lusaka man of Jack Extension has sued his landlord, a retired police officer, in the Lusaka High Court claiming damages for malicious accusations and defamation of character.

Godfrey Mulenga said his landlord, David Masangu Mushoke, has continued subjecting his family to annoyance with intentions of forcing them to vacate the premises without proper cause and further using falsehood over payments of February, March and April rentals, which were already paid.

In a statement of claim filed in the Lusaka High Court, October 2, Mulenga stated that in July, 2016, he went into a lease agreement with Mushoke where it was agreed that he would rent Mushoke’s house no.12234 Jack Extension, at K1,800 per month while Mushoke pays for electricity and water bills.

He stated that in about April 25 and May 25, 2018, he delayed to pay the rental fees.

Mulenga stated that he notified Mushoke about the problem and promised to pay the money, which he did around June 18, 2018, where he paid K2,000.

He stated that on June 23, 2018, Mushoke issued him with a notice to vacate the house for not paying the K1,600 and verbally directed that he used the balance to pay rentals elsewhere.

Mulenga further stated on July 7, 2018, Mushoke demanded that Mulenga paid him the rentals, but to his shock, Mushoke demanded payment of K7,000, which he said covered July 25, 2018, instead of September 25, 2018.

“In July, 2018, and August, the plaintiff paid K5,000 towards the rentals, but to his shock on August 20, 2018, the defendant sent a message on his phone asking him to vacate the house claiming that he wants his family to occupy it having been cleared of his terminal benefits. On about September 10, 2018, the plaintiff paid K1,500 and remained with K500 balance reaching to September 25, 2018,” read the statement of claim.

“The defendant entered and inspected the house without the consent of the plaintiff, and directed plaintiff’s family to vacate the house against the provisions of the Rental Act, which require tenants to be given six months’ notice or compensation for inconvenience if the landlord wants to possess the house for the family.”

Mulenga stated that his landlord had continued subjecting his family to annoyance with intentions of inducing the family to vacate the premises without proper cause and he used falsehood over payments of February, March, April rentals, which were paid.

He stated that his family had suffered injury, embarrassment, loss of human dignity, inconvenience, harassment, intimidation, stress and threats of violence due to Mushoke’s actions and deliberate failure to abide to the provisions of the law.

He is seeking for an order of injunction to restrain Mushoke, his servants or agents from evicting him and his family from possession of the leasehold premises or the plaintiff shifting to the new house, pending the determination of the action.

Mulenga is further seeking damages for disturbing him and his family’s enjoyment of peaceful tenancy, inconvenience, harassment, intimidation and threats of violence.

He is also seeking for an order or declaration that the notice of eviction given to him is null and void as it is not supported by the provision of the Act, thus illegal.

         

Zondiwe Mbewe

About Zondiwe Mbewe

Zondiwe is a vibrant young Zambian journalist who has interest in writing political and current affairs on issues which affect every Zambians. She draws inspiration from journalists who stand for what is right and are not afraid to tell and show the truth to the people.
Email: zondiwe [at] diggers [dot] news

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