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Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Des Van Rooyen. Picture Credit: Gallo Images
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Builder says conveyancer is holding on to his money

By unknown | Mar 28, 2007 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Alfa Mhlauli's building project has stalled because, he says, his conveyancer has unreasonably withheld his money.

Alfa Mhlauli's building project has stalled because, he says, his conveyancer has unreasonably withheld his money.

Mhlauli said he sold his three flats in Booysens, Gauteng, through estate agent Heather Horn for R380000.

"I am a builder and wanted to boost my business," said Mhlauli.

The properties were sold, the buyers took occupation and the estate agent was paid her commission.

The properties have been transferred - but Mhlauli said he has not received his money.

He blames conveyancer Lauren Orritt for unlawfully holding on to his money since January.

"After receiving the money from the buyers, Orritt attorneys have been giving me the run around," said a frustrated Mhlauli.

Mhlauli said he has visited Orritt's house-cum-office many times but was turned away at the gate.

"I have not wronged the attorney or her firm, but its director, Lauren Orritt, told me she would make me wait for a very long time for my money.

"I am frustrated and desperately want my money plus the interest. Please help," said the father of four.

Orritt said Mhlauli's allegations were unfounded and that he was in breach of contract.

She said her firm was unable to transfer any proceeds due to Mhlauli until he complied with the terms of the contract.

"Despite Mhlauli's threats, among other things, to burn down the flats in an attempt to intimidate the buyer, the estate agent and ourselves, we cannot overlook his breach of contract on two of his transfers.

"He has subsequently been paid for two of the deals, but the third one is still posing a problem due to the damages caused to the property by the tenants he had to evict prior to the registration of the transfer," Orritt said.

But the buyer of the third flat, Kingsley Nepawe, said his contract stated clearly that it was his duty to evict the tenants.

"They have agreed to vacate when they find alternative accommodation, and they are paying me the rent.

"My only problem is that the attorney has not paid the R11000 in rates and taxes though she registered the flat in my name," Nepawe said.

Horn denied that Mhlauli had threatened Nepawe, as Orritt alleged.

"I am not aware of any threats except that the law firm has not payed Mhlauli his money.

"He has no reason to threaten me. I have known him for a long time.

"I carried out my mandate and it ended when the property was registered in the buyers' names," said Horn, who was paid her commission.

Orritt was not able to fax her proof of payment to Mhlauli when asked to do so.

The Law Society of the Northern Provinces has agreed to look into Mhlauli's complaint.

At the time of going to press Orritt had not responded.


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