About 47 serving and retired teachers of Chilenje ‘B’, Kabwata and Woodlands ‘A’ Basic Schools’ teachers have asked the Lusaka High Court to be joined to the matter where their 17 colleagues are challenging government’s decision to evict them from Kabulonga teachers compound.

Mary Kanuma and 46 others have told the court that good samaritans have informed them that government intends to evict them from their respective housing units at any time despite giving them a legitimate expectation that the houses would be sold to them as sitting tenants.

They have further stated that they are interested parties in this matter and are likely to be affected by the outcome of the proceedings.

In this matter, Emmanuel Daka, Langton Kafuni and others sought judicial review to challenge the decision of government to evict them from the Kabulonga teachers compound on Twin Palm road, in Lusaka.

The applicants have cited the Attorney General as the respondent.

In August this year, High Court judge Mwila Chitabo granted the 17 sitting and retired teachers leave to commence judicial review proceedings in the matter.

The court ruled that the said leave would operate as a stay of their threatened eviction, until the determination of the matter.

Kanuma and 46 others now want to be joined as second applicants to the matter.

In an affidavit in support of summons for an order for joinder of parties filed in the Lusaka High Court, the 47 intended second applicants stated that they were both serving and retired teachers under the Ministry of Education and currently occupying teachers houses at Chilenje ‘B’ Basic School teachers compound, Kabwata teachers compound and Woodlands ‘A’ Basic School teachers compound respectively.

They stated that they were all sitting tenants for various periods of the teachers’ housing dwelling units at the respective teachers compound and were all beneficiaries of government Home Ownership Scheme/Policy introduced by government in 1996.

The 47 intended second applicants further stated that following the said government scheme/policy, they lodged respective applications to purchase the respective housing units through the prescribed procedure for purchase of institutional housing units owned by government.

They added that the same were duly sent to the Permanent Secretary for Lusaka Province for onward forwarding to the Ministry of Works and Supply.

“Following persist follow-ups by the second intended applicants from 1996 to 2000, the respondent by letters dated June 29, 2000, July 18, 2000 and 2000 respectively, certified that the respective housing units had the consent of the respondent to be valuated by the Government Valuation Department and thereafter for offer letters to be duly issued to the second intended applicants,” read the affidavit.

The second intended applicants stated that they continued making frantic follow-ups with the respondent (government) for the valuation of the respective housing units and issuance of offer letters in their favour.

They added that this was until government through the office of the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Education directed them to engage a private surveyor for purposes of generating respective site plans for the respective teachers’ housing compounds, which they proceeded to do.

The intended applicants lamented that in spite of them undertaking the survey of the respective teachers compounds in accordance with government’s directive and despite spirited and frantic efforts to obtain letters of offer for the respective housing units, government had, for no apparent reason, refused, failed or neglected to attend to issuance of the offer letters to them.

“The second intended applicants have been informed by good Samaritans and verily believe the veracity of the said information that the respondent intends to evict them from the respective housing units at any time despite the respondent having given the second intended applicants a legitimate expectation that the respective housing units would be sold to them as sitting tenants in accordance with the respondent’s House Ownership Scheme/Policy,” read the affidavit further.

They stated that in the interest of justice and in the avoidance of multiplicity or duplicity of actions on the same subject, they ought to be joined as second applicants to the matter.