Zimbabwe police have joined First Lady Grace Mugabe’s side after she was taken to court for invading properties belonging to Lebanese businessman Mr Jamal Ahmed, saying the assets in question were duly placed under police guard as part of an investigation into an assortment of criminal allegations against the mogul.

Mr Ahmed on December 21 last year obtained an interdict at the High Court against Dr Mugabe, her son Mr Russel Goreraza and a top police officer Superintendent Kennedy Fero, whom he accused of unlawfully occupying and taking over his three houses.

However, the three respondents — through Mr Wilson Manase of Manase and Manase Legal Practitioners — this week approached the court seeking discharge of an order granted in favour of Mr Ahmed by Justice Clement Phiri last month.

In a notice of opposition filed at the High Court on Monday, the lawyers attached separate affidavits by Superintendents Nyambo Viera and Kennedy Fero confirming the placement of Mr Ahmed’s property under police guard had nothing to do with the First Family.

Detective Superintendent Viera stated in his affidavit that he was investigating Mr Ahmed in connection with a number of cases involving fraud, theft, property acquisition, money laundering, purchase of minerals, and Exchange Control laws.

Police, according to Superintendent Viera, are also investigating a case in which the First Lady lost $1,3 million to Mr Ahmed.

To that end, police have deployed officers to protect the properties — two in Avondale and one along Harare Drive in Vainona — pending finalisation of investigations.

“We are unaware that the First Lady forcibly took over any property belonging to Jamal Ahmed. All we can confirm is that the properties are under police guard to facilitate investigations.”