By Tendai Kamhungira
Former Local Government minister Saviour Kasukuwere’s brother, Stanley, is facing civil imprisonment after failing to pay $100 000 that he owes to Tian Ze Tobacco for tobacco inputs advanced to him by the company.
“Applicant’s (Tian Ze Tobacco) business is the financing of tobacco production through sale of the tobacco inputs and purchase thereof as envisaged under provisions of the Exchange Control (Tobacco Finance) Order, Statutory Instrument 61 of 2004. Respondent (Stanley) is a farmer who conducts his farming activities at Plot No. 2 Mwonga Farm, Muzarabani.
“The parties have since the year 2009 entered into successive tobacco farming contracts wherein applicant sold tobacco farming inputs to respondent and at certain terms and conditions. The parties executed agreements of sale for 2009-2010 and 2010-2011 tobacco farming seasons respectively,” the court heard.
According to court papers, Stanley’s debt accrued over the seasons, such that as at November 30, 2011, he owed $107 127, 84 for tobacco farming inputs that were sold to him by the company.
“When the respondent failed to pay the purchase price for the inputs that had been delivered to him, applicant invoked the arbitration clause on the agreements entered into by the parties.
“The Commercial Arbitration Centre duly appointed an arbitrator who handed down his award in favour of the applicant on April 15, 2014.
“The award was in the following terms: respondent is ordered to pay the sum of $107 127, 84 plus interest at the rate of five percent per annum with effect from 30th September 2012 to date of full and final payment and costs of arbitration,” the court heard.
The company claimed in court papers that despite demand, Stanley had refused or neglected or omitted to pay $107 127, 84.
According to court papers, Stanley was served with a notice to attend the arbitration proceedings but did not turn up and did not file any papers in response.
The arbitrator concluded Stanley had willfully defaulted, failed or neglected to attend all proceedings in the matter as there was no explanation for his absence.
The arbitrator’s award was later registered with the High Court in 2014, leading to the issuance of a writ of execution in 2015, allowing the attachment of Stanley’s movable property.
However, last week the company approached the High Court seeking Stanley to show cause why an order for civil imprisonment should not be made against him.
“You should bring with you evidence for your financial position and it will be in your own interest to give the court evidence of: your income from wages, salary or any other earnings and any other income you may receive from any other source (you should bring wage slips or any other proof of your income),” reads part of the summons for civil imprisonment. DailyNews