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Fidelity Printers sue ex-bosses for $2,7m

By Lloyd Gumbo

Fidelity Printers and Refiners has sued its former chief executive officer and finance director Allen Marimbe and Godknows Hofisi respectively, after they allegedly clandestinely withdrew about $2,7 million from the firm’s bank account.

High Court of Zimbabwe
High Court of Zimbabwe

Marimbe was last year arrested on charges of fraud and money laundering involving about $2,7 million, but refused to give a statement to the police on the grounds that most of his testimony was wrapped under the veil of the Official Secrets Act.

That was after he had been indicted to the High Court facing criminal charges but the matter was postponed indefinitely.

Concurrently, Fidelity Printers and Refiners board has also taken the civil side of the matter by way of summons that were served to the respondents recently.

The duo has entered an appearance to defend the matter before the High Court. Advocate Thabani Mpofu instructed by Coghlan, Welsh and Guest legal practitioner, Mr Wellington Magaya represent Fidelity Printers and Refiners.

A copy of the summons seen by The Herald, indicated that Marimbe and Hofisi unilaterally terminated their employment contracts in February this year.

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The duo terminated their employment contracts after the new Fidelity Printers and Refiners board summoned them for disciplinary hearings.

The summons indicated that the two former employees were obliged to manage and control plaintiff’s assets and business, place their employer’s business and its interests above their own personal interests and those of any other people among others.

“In breach of these duties, defendants conducted themselves dishonestly, fraudulently, recklessly and in certain instances criminally during the course of their discharge of function in that; They caused, participated in or suborned the illicit withdrawal of various amounts totalling the sum of $2 669 146-00 from plaintiff’s Bank Account held with Stanbic Bank.

“The amounts were withdrawn non-procedurally and for the benefit of no known recipient and or beneficiaries. The sums withdrawn were not put to the business of or used for the benefit of plaintiff or the people of Zimbabwe on whose behalf those funds were effectively held in trust.

“In conducting themselves in the manner afore stated, defendants caused pecuniary loss to plaintiff in the sum of $2 669 146 being the actual sum lost by plaintiff as a result of the breach by them of their obligations,” read the summons.

The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe subsidiary said when Marimbe and Hofisi were summoned to account for their illicit activities under the threat of disciplinary sanction, they terminated their contracts of employment and went on to claim exit packages.

The Fidelity Printers and Refiners said in the circumstances, defendants were obliged to make good the loss caused to the former as a result of their breach of contractual and general law obligations.

The firm said despite demand, defendants refused, failed and or neglected to make good the loss it suffered.

“Wherefore plaintiff prays for; payment of the sum of $2 669 146 against defendants jointly and severally the one paying the other to be absolved.

“Interest on the sum of $2 669 146 calculated at the prescribed rate and reckoned from the date of service of summons upon them to the date of final payment and cost of suit,” reads the summons. The Herald