Senior chief Tafuna of the Lungu tribe of Mbala and Mpulungu districts has sued IHS Zambia Limited in the Lusaka High Court for failing to pay rental fees for the communication towers installed in his chiefdoms.

He is claiming damages for breach of the lease agreement entered by his chiefdom and IHS Zambia Limited as well as an order for the company to pay rental fees owed to his chiefdom from February, 2018, to-date.

Senior chief Tafuna is further seeking interest on the sums found due at the current commercial bank lending rates, costs and any other relief the Court may deem fit.

In a statement of claim filed in the Lusaka High Court, Tuesday, Matthew Kakungu explained that he was at all material times senior chief Tafuna of the Lungu tribe of Mpulungu and Mbala districts, coroneted on September 29, 2018.

He added that IHS Zambia was a limited company, which carried on the business of building and operating telecommunications infrastructure, throughout emerging markets.

Senior chief Tafuna stated that while carrying out his duties, it came to his attention that there was a subsisting lease agreement entered into between IHS Zambia Limited and his chiefdom.

He added that it was agreed in the said lease agreement that IHS Zambia would pay rental fees for the communication towers it had installed in his chiefdoms in Mbala and Mpulungu districts.

“It was further agreed in the lease agreement that the said rental fees were to be remitted to the senior chief Tafuna monthly. IHS Zambia Limited in line with the lease agreement began to make the agreed rental payments as provided for, however, during the period of March, 2017, to January, 2018, the company made rental payments that were inconsistent,” read the statement of claim.

Senior chief Tafuna claimed that despite IHS Zambia being asked why it was remitting sums that were inconsistent, it neglected to give an account of its failure to make payments as was agreed.

He further claimed that IHS Zambia Limited had not made any rental payments from January 24, 2018, to-date despite the company being given the lease agreement in good faith.

“Senior chief Tafuna will aver that the last payment to be made by IHS Zambia Limited was K7,665.38 on January 24, 2018, which brought the total payments made for the period December 12, 2016, to January 24, 2018, to K83,000,” read the statement of claim further.

Senior chief Tafuna lamented that as a result, he had continued to suffer loss and damage.

He added that in the premises, IHS Zambia was liable to pay the monies due under the lease agreement from January 14, 2018, to-date.