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Ngucha Energy sues Kambwili, demands K2.2bn for linking oil company to LunguBy Zondiwe Mbewe on 23 Jan 2019
Ngucha Energy Corporation Limited has sued NDC consultant Chishimba Kambwili in the Lusaka High Court, claiming damages of over K2 billion for alleging that the company belongs to President Edgar Lungu.
The company, which is further seeking damages for loss of business and an unreserved apology, vehemently argued that Kambwili’s statement was false, malicious and only intended to spread hate and discord about the company for his own political gain.
In a statement of claim filed in the Lusaka High Court, Tuesday, Ngucha Energy stated that it operated as a distributor of petroleum products and lubricants as well as retailer in the same products.
It stated that on December 4, 2018, Kambwili issued a false statement on Radio Phoenix’s ‘Let The People Talk’ programme to the effect that Ngucha was a company belonging to President Lungu.
“Kambwili in justifying his statement stated that NGUCHA is made up of words from the name luNGU and CHAgwa, that is to say that NGU is from the name Lungu and Cha from Chagwa to make ‘Ngucha’,” read the statement of claim.
Ngucha Energy stated that Kambwili’s statement was false, malicious and was only intended to spread hate and discord about the company for his own political gain, as Ngucha did not belong to President Lungu.
It alleged that Kambwili did not bother to carry out due diligence by conducting a search at PACRA on the directors and shareholders of Ngucha.
Ngucha Energy further stated that contrary to the falsehoods asserted by Kambwili, the company was owned by two private persons, who were not in any way related to President Lungu and that they had no political inclinations whatsoever either to the PF or the Head of State.
It stated that the company had been in existence as way back as 2010 even before the PF formed government and before President Lungu became member of parliament for Chawama constituency and subsequently as President.
Ngucha Energy further stated that prior to its incorporation, there existed a sister company called Ngucha Enterprises Limited as far back as 2001, when President Lungu had not even been elected as member of parliament.
It stated that it wrote to Kambwili on December 13, 2018, to demand a retraction of the statement but the same had not been rendered.
Ngucha Energy lamented that the falsehoods uttered by Kambwili had seriously injured the reputation and business standing of the company, and had adversely affected its normal business operations to the effect that government through the Ministry of Energy had cancelled a contract recently won through a public tender.
“As a result of Kambwili’s falsehood, the company has suffered loss and damage. Particulars of loss and damage; loss of income in the contract sum of US $184,914,782.07, loss of business and damage to reputation as the general public deem that the company is engaged in corrupt dealings,” read the statement of claim.
And in an affidavit in support of ex parte summons for an order of interim injunction, Ngucha Energy general manager Elias Kamundi, a Kenyan national, added that on November 22, 2018, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Energy informed the company on it being awarded a contract for the supply and delivery of 135,075m3 of diesel and 58,500m3 of unleaded petrol.
He, however, disclosed that on January 11, this year, the said Permanent Secretary gave a notice of termination of contract for the supply and delivery of diesel and unleaded petrol between the Ministry of Energy and the company.
Ngucha Energy is now claiming damages for injurious falsehoods of its reputation and interests, damages for loss of income in the sum of US $184,914,782.07 (K2,212,505,367.47), damages for loss of business in its retail filling stations and an injunction restraining Kambwili from further publicising the same or similar falsehoods in the future.
It’s further seeking for an unreserved apology through the electronic media and on the front page of the widely circulating print media, interest on the amounts to be found due, costs and any other relief the court may deem fit.
About Zondiwe Mbewe
Zondiwe is a vibrant young Zambian journalist who has interest in writing political and current affairs on issues which affect every Zambians. She draws inspiration from journalists who stand for what is right and are not afraid to tell and show the truth to the people.
Email: zondiwe [at] diggers [dot] news
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