|COMPANY executive and former Zimbabwe national rugby team manager, Losson Mutongwiza, last week offered to pay a measly $20 for the upkeep of his children with his estranged former wife.
Mutongwiza, a business executive with a local battery manufacturing company in Harare, had applied for a variation order on the maintenance he is paying his ex-wife Lizzie Nyamweda.
The two had two children aged 11 and 16 years together before the union collapsed almost 10 years ago.
When the case came before the courts two years ago, Mutongwiza was initially ordered to cough up $150 for each of the children and had now sought the variation order citing changed circumstances.
After the initial order, Mutongwiza reportedly defaulted on his payments and was last year sentenced to a year in jail, wholly suspended on condition that he cleared his maintenance arrears that had accrued to $5 100.
In his application last week, the businessman argued that the previous ruling had taken into consideration that the two minor children were not going to boarding school at the time.
“At the time, they (children) used to stay at home but now they spend the major part of their time at boarding school at my expense.
“This requires therefore that the order be seriously revised downwards otherwise the money is no longer benefitting the children,” read part of his affidavit.
Mutongwiza also told the court that it needed to take cognizance of the fact that, Nyamweda was gainfully employed.
“She (Nyamweda) is a woman of means and hence I am not obliged to foot expenses to visit the children. I am also re-married and my current wife earns limited amount….under the changes in circumstances, I can only pay $20 per child,” he submitted.
In a counter application, Nyamweda argued that her ex-husband’s visits to the two minor children while at boarding school were limited hence she needed to be assisted with the expenses she incurred on the numerous trips she makes to Marondera, almost 80km east of Harare.
“I am the one who drives to Ruzawi School to visit the children using my own fuel and he cannot say he is the one footing such expenses for me,” said Nyamweda. “It is also a fact that the court ordered me to pay medical aid and one of the children is also required to visit a psychologist every month on my account.
“I have also attached a list of the expenses I incur every month in my opposing affidavit that I have submitted to the court,” said Nyamweda.
Magistrate, Tafadzwa Muvhami said he needed to strike a balance and ordered Mutongwiza to pay $100 towards the upkeep of the two children.