The High Court in Lilongwe has dismissed an application to stop, Zione Ntaba, a judge of the High Court based in Zomba, from the sale of a house in Lilongwe’s Area 12 which she claimed was fraudulently sold against the wishes of her late father, George Maurice Justice Ntaba.
In a judgement delivered on June 16 2017, High Court judge Charles Mkandawire faulted Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) vice president for the Central Region Hetherwick Ntaba for aladministration of a deceased estate belonging to his relation in which he was one of the executors.
Zione Ntaba was appointed administrator of her father’s estate in 2009, replacing Dr Ntaba—who is also President Peter Mutharika’s aide—as the adminstrator after she embarked on an inquiry of the deceased estate.
The court heard that barely a month after Zione Ntaba obtained an order restraining any dealings on the house without consent from her, her uncles and aunts obtained letters of execution and sold the house to Alice Namata not long after.
The court found that Dr Ntaba’s affidavit as former administrator of the estate lacked seriousness and was not made in good faith.
Dr Ntaba, the court ruled, knew that Zione Ntaba had replaced the executors as the new administrator of the estate, but found it ‘strange’ that he did not inform the uncles and aunts to the new administrator.
The judge also found that Dr Ntaba and the Administrator General violated a clause in the deceased’s will by giving the house to brothers and sisters of the deceased because there was an express wish that any mortgaged house should not be sold but the income from the property declared and distributed between beneficiaries.
The defendants Maxwell Ntaba, Jean Ntaba, Emily Ntaba and William Ntaba applied for a stay of execution.
But after hearing both side, Judge Mkandawire said the appeal would not suffer if the June judgement – w revoked the letters of administration which thuncles and aunts obtained “fraudulently” and ordered the Commissioner of Lands to cancel Zione Ntaba’s uncles and aunts as owners of the house -was carried out.
The judge also found it strange that the executors could give the plot to the defendants without evidence of transfer yet they the same executors transferred a Blantyre plot in 2006.
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