NORTON legislator Temba Mliswa and his lawyer ex-wife, Cynthia Mugwira, faced each other in court yesterday in the case in which the MP is being accused of allegedly defaulting on maintenance payments.
Mliswa appeared before magistrate Ruth Moyo and entered a not guilty plea.
Mugwira told the court that Mliswa had violated the maintenance order, issued on June 30, 2021, leading her to file a lawsuit against the father of her two young children.
The State asserts that Mliswa received an invoice for $1 216 000 to cover his minor children’s school expenses in December last year. On January 19 this year, he paid $2 940 000, leaving the first invoice’s balance due.
In her examination in chief, Mugwira told the court that the money should be paid into the school’s account directly, upon request of the invoices, which are issued in accordance with the currency one intends to use.
She, however, told the court that the issue of ratings don’t apply because the invoices were independent of each other.
Mliswa denied ever failing to pay maintenance or school fees. He said he didn’t owe the school. He told the court that if there were any arrears, or default in maintenance, the default was not wilfull.
Mliswa claimed that he was given the school’s United States dollar invoice, which he settled fully, at the prevailing official rate on the date he paid. Any variances, which Mugwira was claiming, were being computed on the black market, which is unlawful.
He said he had gone to the extent of borrowing in an effort to comply with the maintenance order pending the filing and determination of an application for variation. Mandirasa Chigumira prosecuted.