Maritime Freight & Forwarding Limited petitions Chief Justice Mumba Malila to intervene in delayed Zambian Breweries Plc 2011/HN/298 verdict
MARITIME FREIGHT AND FORWARDING LTD
P. O. BOX 70152
CELL NO: +260 978 273 314
Monday, 5th December 2022
The Honourable Justice Dr Mumba Malila
Chief Justice of the Republic of Zambia
Supreme Court of Zambia Independence Avenue
P.O. Box 50067, Ridgeway
Re: Maritime Freight & Forwarding Limited v Zambian Breweries Plc 2011/HN/298
Further to my letter dated 31st October 2022 regarding the above subject matter, I wish to bring it to your attention the conduct of Judge T. Katanekwa and Richard Ngulube, the lawyer representing Zambian Breweries in this matter.
When this matter commenced on 28th November 2011, Judge Katanekwa granted Maritime Freight an ex-parte order of interim injunction on the same date. The inter-partes hearing was in December 2011 and ruling on the inter-partes hearing was delivered on 13th April 2012.
What shocked me prior to the ruling regarding the said injunction was that Mr Richard Ngulube who operates from Lusaka literally camped in Ndola waiting for the said ruling. I went to the Ndola High Court to confirm this for myself on the 12th April 2012 after word came from the Registry of the Ndola High Court that Mr Ngulube was hovering around the High Court waiting for the ruling of the said injunction which Judge Katanekwa was writing.
I drove to the Ndola High Court incognito in my operations managers operation van registration number ABT 2513 which had tinted door glasses and parked next to Mr Ngulube’s Range Rover registration number ABX 8400. We listened carefully to Mr Ngulube whose motor vehicle’s windows were wide open as he spoke to Judge Katanekwa’s marshal (name withheld) on the phone.
Proof is there that in between 9th and 13th April 2012, Mr Richard Ngulube was in Ndola and it will further be shown that he was in touch with Judge Katanekwa’s marshal. In fact, at one point when we parked next to his vehicle, we heard Mr Ngulube asking the marshal;”till now? The judge has not concluded writing the ruling?”
The question is, how did Mr Ngulube know that the Judge was writing the ruling for him to even travel to Ndola?
This demonstrates that there has been corruption in this case and it is the main reason why Judge Katanekwa has literally been refusing to deliver the judgment of the Court since 2016.
Further to the foregoing, as we sat in our van with closed tinted windows, quietly and attentively sniffing what Richhard Ngulube was saying to the Judge’s marshal on the phone, we also noticed that at one point he received a phone call from Mwansa Mutimushi (Legal Counsel for Zambian Breweries then) who was inquiring why Mr Ngulube had delayed in picking the ruling in Ndola.
How did Mwansa know that Judge Katanekwa was writing the ruling?
Mwansa equally informed Mr Ngulube that there was another writ which Mr Chatora had filed in the Commercial division of the Lusaka High Court on 12th April 2012. In response, Mr Ngulube told Mwansa Mutimushi that the ruling for the Ndola matter was almost ready.
How did he know? There is more to the delay in the delivery of this Judgment that has been occasioned by Judge Katanekwa in this matter deliberately to favour Zambian Breweries.
Furthermore, after their Monday meeting of 9th April 2012 held at Zambian Breweries in Ndola, my friend who attended that meeting informed me that Markhill Olemens, who was District Manager North for Zambian Breweries informed the meeting that the injunction that Judge Katanekwa had granted to Maritime Freight and Forwarding in November 2011 was going to be discharged. Markhill informed the attendees that top management at Zambian Breweries had spoken to the Judge and the injunction was going to be discharged. How did Markhill know that the injunction was going to be discharged?
My friend informed me about this development on Tuesday 10th April
2012 and the injunction was subsequently discharged on Friday 13th April 2012. My Lord, just look at the sequence of events;
1. Monday, 9th April 2012, Markhill informs the meeting that the injunction was going to be discharged
2. Thursday, 12th April 2012, the Registry informs Maritime staff that Richard Ngulube was in Ndola and in constant touch with Judge Katanekwas marshall.
3. Friday, 13th April 2012, Judge Katanekwa discharges the injunction.
What a court!
The day Annabelle Degroot (DW2 in this matter), the Managing Director for Zambian Breweries then, testified before Judge Katahekwa in January 2016 in the Kitwe High Court (Judge Katanekwa moved to the Kitwe High Court after his suspension in 2015), the matter was adjourned for lunch from 13:00hrs to 14:30hrs. I rushed to the lavatory situated on the ground floor of the Kitwe High Court. As I walked back to the court room upstairs, I overheard Abel Tembo of Tembo Ngulube Associates (another lawyer for Zambian Breweries) telling Annabelle Degroot and I quote;
“That letter dated 10th October 2011 which was signed by Mwansa Mutimushi (legal counsel for Zambian Breweries at the time) is a very big problem to Zambian Breweries. Something needs to be done.”
What is that something that needed to be done? There is now this delay of 6 years in delivering the Judgment of the Court. Annabelle Degroot/ Abel Tembo and Richard Ngulube were descending the stairs when the letter was being discussed and I conveniently hid myself so that I could promptly get what they were saying.
The main thing I picked from their conversation was a letter written by Mwansa Mutimushi on 10th October 2011. They were all very concerned about that letter and I am eagerly waiting to see what Judge Katanekwa will say about that letter.
After Annabelle concluded her testimony in the Kitwe High Court in January 2016, she came back to the Lusaka High Court commercial division to testify before Judge Flavia Chishimba on 27th April 2016. This time, she was testifying in a matter which has gone all the way to the Supreme Court of Zambia and the Supreme Court delivered its Judgment on 30th August 2022. This matter also involves Maritime Freight and Forwarding and Zambian Breweries.
On that particular day, 27th April 2016, Judge Chishimba sat from 09:00hrs to past 18:00hrs. As we walked out of the Court room, Annabelle Degroot remarked as follows;
“You Mr Chatora, you think you can defeat Zambian Breweries? We have already talked to State House, the ChiefJustice and other Judges. You will see what will happen to you, You can only inconvenience us by wasting our time in court.”
The Chief Justice of Zambia was late Ireen Mambilima.
I was in the company of 7 people, but one of the 7 people has since died. The legal counsel for Zambia Breweries, Deborah Bwalya, was also present. Eddie Mwitwa and Abel Tembo remained in the Court Room packing their documents. Was Annabelle Degroot’s statement a coincidence?
My Lord just compare the conduct of Richard Ngulube and Markhill Olemens in April 2012 and the statements by Annabelle Degroot above. Look at the behavior of Judge Katanekwa of sitting on a matter for 6 years without delivering Judgment. Then read the Supreme Court judgment of 30th August 2022. Annabelle Degroot didn’t lie. She told the truth.
Annabelle Degroot has actually been vindicated. What she said has come to pass. Judge Musonda sat on the appeal in the Supreme Court for 3 years. He recused himself from the panel this year because he could not frustrate the appeal further because he was not appointed Chief Justice. The conduct exhibited by Judge Musonda in the Supreme Court is exactly what Judge Katanekwa has done. Sit on the matter without passing Judgment.
Further to the above, look at the corrupt conduct of Judge Hamaundu. Visiting a litigant at his office. Then he expects that litigant to accept his judgment? A fabricated judgment! My Lord, intervene and allow that Notice of Motion filed by Maritime Freight and Forwarding on 13th September 2022 to be heard on merit. It’s good for the court because it will certainly create public confidence. The truth has to be known.
MARITIME FREIGHT AND FORWARDING LIMITED