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$2,2m King Lion claim withdrawn

By Fidelis Munyoro

Twelve spouses and minor children of victims of the King Lion bus accident have withdrawn their $2,2 million claim for delictual damages against the bus company.

A tow truck recovers the wreckage of a King Lion bus that veered off the road and hit a tree killing 45 people in Nyamakate, Hurungwe – Picture by Walter Nyamukondiwa
A tow truck recovers the wreckage of a King Lion bus that veered off the road and hit a tree killing 45 people in Nyamakate, Hurungwe – Picture by Walter Nyamukondiwa

The accident occurred on June 7 last year along the Harare-Chirundu highway.

Forty-three passengers were killed, while 20 others were injured.

The 12, who were being represented by their lawyer Mr Godfrey Macheyo, filed their claim at the High Court this year in October seeking compensation.

Mr Macheyo, however, withdrew the claim before the matter was even set down for hearing.

Said Mr Macheyo: “Take notice that the plaintiffs have withdrawn the claim and tender party-to-party costs.”

This was after it was brought to his attention by King Lion’s lawyer Mr Blessing Nyamwanza that the summons were defective.

“Kindly note that the summons are defective and therefore expiable more particularly in that they are vague and embarrassing,” said Mr Nyamwanza in his letter to the litigants’ lawyer.

“They do not disclose a cause of action against the second defendant (Nicoz Diamond, the bus company’s insurers).”

Mr Nyamwanza also noted that while the summons were a nightmare to follow , the calculations contained in the plaintiff’s declaration were irreconcilable and difficult to comprehend.

“The damages claimed are not clear as to what they relate to, for example whether they are special or general damages,” he said. “The summons and declaration show profound and complete lack of preparedness or awareness as to what was required on the part of whosoever was responsible for drawing up the summons.”

In their declaration, the plaintiffs blamed the death of their relatives on the bus driver James Ruzvidzo for negligently causing the accident.

Ruzvidzo, who was employed by the bus company, also died on the spot.

The plaintiffs were seeking compensation in the form of delictual or edictal damages for all dependants in the grand total of $2 225 691 plus interest at the prescribed rate from the date of judgment to date of full payment and costs of suit. The Herald

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