High Court tosses businessman Katsimberis application challenging cancellation of agreement with Ken Sharpe

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By Staff Reporter

HIGH Court judge, Justice Joseph Mafusire has struck off the roll an application by embattled businessman, George Katsimberis to block cancellation of a joint venture agreement between himself and former partner, Ken Sharpe.

Sharpe withdrew from the deal after Katsimberis reneged on their agreement and failed to deliver timely as has been agreed resulting in the present litigation.

Katsimberis dragged Sharpe to court in 2020 for breach of contract and wanted the termination nullified.

The matter was however removed from the roll with consent from both parties.

“Whereupon after reading documents filed of record and hearing counsel, it is ordered that by consent matter is removed from the roll pending the resolution of the application for recusal to be launched by the plaintiffs. There shall be no order as to costs,” reads the brief order by the judge.

Katsimberis and his company Halinka Investments were the plaintiffs in the matter.

Sharpe was cited in his capacity as trustee of the Kilimanjaro, Porcupine and the Hamster Trusts cited as respondents in the application.

Castlehorpe Investments Pvt Ltd and Gunhill Ecofriendly Estate Pvt Ltd were also cited as respondents.

Sharpe sought cancellation of the agreement accusing Katsimberis of failing to procure town planning approval which was to be obtained by November 2017.

He also noted that there was no development on the property.

“We are instructed that contrary to the agreed terms of the Joint Venture agreement, Halinka has breached the terms of the Joint Venture agreement by failing to perform in accordance with its building obligations, in particular to date there has been no procurement of the town planning approval which was to be obtained by the 15th of November 2017.

“The town planning approval was a sine qua non to the commencement of construction of the flats on the property which was agreed to commence on the 1st of December 2017.

“To date there has been no development on the property despite our clients compliance with the terms of the Joint Venture Agreement and several requests for Halinka to perform, in light of its failure to take timely steps to comply with its building obligations.

“Halinka’s failure to perform in accordance with its obligations as set out in the Joint venture agreement, is an unequivocal manifestation of its intention to not be bound by the terms of the Joint Venture Agreement and therefore amounts to repudation,” wrote Sharpe’s attorneys, Dube, Manikai and Hwacha.

Sharpe said he needed immediate cancellation of the Joint Venture Agreement which he entered on June 7 2016.

Parties agreed to develop some land in Harare measuring 7.663 hectares to build 600 flats.

Katsimberis was to conduct a legal accounting and technical due diligence which would be carried out by Virgin Management and Chinawa Law Chambers.

After that he was to pay US$150 000 in favour of Sharpe or his nominee.

He was supposed to pay US$600 000 to enable release of the title deed to facilitate transfer of the property from Homeday Properties Pvt Ltd to the Joint Venture company Gunhill which was to be incorporated.

The parties were entitled to hold 50% shareholding each in the JVC.

Katsimberis was to pay the sum of US$750 000 which was to buy the stand for the flats.

Parties also agreed that upon the sale of the flats belonging the JVC they would be entitled to share profits on equal basis.

Katsimberis however allegedly delayed resulting in the split.