ZimParks Sues Army Company US$142 000 Over Unpaid Use Chalets

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By Mary Taruvinga

ZIMBABWE Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (ZimParks) has taken to court a company operated by the Zimbabwe National Army (ZNA), Rusununguko Nkululeko demanding US$142 530 for chalets leased to the latter in 2018.

ZimParks is also suing Landela Safaris for US$45 000 over a similar deal in which it leased View Point Site in Victoria Falls to the private company.

In summons filed separately by ZimParks at the High Court, the agreement between the national wildlife operator and Rusununguko was entered into in 2018.

In terms of the agreement, ZimParks granted a photographic lease agreement for chalets in the Zambezi National Park to the defendant.

The court application says in terms of the agreement, US$60 000 was for the right to lease the site and was payable in equal installments over the first five years of the lease starting in January 2018.

This was in addition to annual lease fees of US$35 000 payable from January 2018 to December 2021, and payable in advance before the first day of January each year.

It was also agreed all the amounts due each year were to attract interest at the rate of 12% per annum at the interbank market interest rates.

However, despite demand letters of demand from ZimParks, Rusununguko Nkululeko failed to pay the amount.

Meanwhile, regarding Landela Safaris, in 2018, the two parties entered into a written agreement in terms of which ZimParks granted the defendant the right to lease View Point Site in Victoria Falls for the purpose of photographic safari use.

“In terms of the agreement, Landela Safaris was bound to pay annual lease fees in the sum of US$45 000 starting from 2019, and payable or before the first of January each year.

All amounts due in each year were to attract interest at the rate of 12% with Value Added Tax (VAT) added to the above amounts due.

However, according to court papers, Landela Safaris failed to pay a total of US$154 800 to ZimParks as of January 2021.

“Wherefore the plaintiff claims judgment in the sum of US$154 800 payable in Zimbabwean dollars at the authorised prevailing rate of exchange in terms of the Exchange Control Act, holding over damages calculated at the rate of US$3 750 per month, interest on the capital sum of US$1 54 800 calculated at the rate of 12% per annum,” reads part of the lawsuit.

Both matters are yet to be heard.