By Robert Tapfumaneyi
FOUR former MDC-T staffers owed thousands of dollars in unpaid wages have approached the High Court seeking an order to garnish the party bank accounts.
The four are Wilson Box, Aleck Tabe, Geraldine Sibanda and Lawrence Paganga.
They want the High Court to grant an order for the attachment and deduction of US$155 318 in terms of the Political Parties Finance equivalent at the prevailing interbank rate on the date of payment.
In their court papers filed Thursday, they cited the Justice minister, MDC-T and African Banking Corporation of Zimbabwe Limited (Banc ABC) as 1st, 2nd and 3rd respondents respectively.
Applicants are owed money in terms of an arbitration award granted in their favour some few years back.
The four former employees are arguing that the Respondents have failed or neglected to pay them what they are owed despite several demands and capacity to pay.
“There is a high risk or possibility that the 2nd Respondent (MDC-T) will use up all the funds in its active bank account and the Applicants will not be able to recover the money they are owed by the 2nd Respondent,” the court papers read.
“There is no inconvenience or irreparable prejudice which Respondents will suffer if the relief being sought is granted and also if the matter is heard on an urgent basis.
“On the other hand, if the said application is not heard on an urgent basis and the relief being sought is not granted, Applicant stands to suffer great inconvenience and irreparable harm.”
The four won an arbitration award and proceeded to file writs of execution against moveable properties to recover their money.
But the sheriff’s return of service indicated that their former employer’s goods were insufficient to cover the debt.
“The specific details of 2nd Respondent’s immovable properties, if any, are unknown to the Applicants hence the Applicants cannot instruct the sheriff to attach the 2nd Respondent’s immovable property,” further read the court papers.
“In the event that the Applicants find immovable property belonging to the 2nd Respondent, the amounts realised from the said property or properties may not be sufficient to cover the debt for all Applicants.
“Furthermore, Applicants will be put out of pocket in trying to raise money to pay the sheriff’s costs thereto.”
Information is that “on the 26th of April 2019, the 2nd Respondent’s legal representatives, wrote a letter indicating the 2nd Respondent’s intention to pay the Applicants from their government grant to be disbursed in terms of the Political Parties Finance Act Chapter as soon as it is availed to the 2nd Respondent.
“To secure payment of the said money to Applicants, the Applicants have therefore approached this honourable court seeking a garnishee order against the 2nd Respondent’s bank account.”