Busy Signal off the hook

HARARE - Jamaican artiste Reanno Gordon aka Busy Signal is off the hook after a High Court judge yesterday dismissed an application filed by a local promoter accusing the dancehall musician of failing to honour a contractual obligation.

High Court judge Loice Matanda-Moyo, who heard the matter in her chambers, dismissed Longcash Entertainment (Private) Limited’s application to be reimbursed $5 500.

In the application, Longcash had cited Turf Music Entertainment, Busy Signal and the deputy sheriff as respondents.

“We are pleased to tell you that the honourable judge dismissed the urgent chamber application with costs,” Busy Signal’s lawyer Rumbidzai Venge told journalists soon after the ruling was handed down in Matanda-Moyo’s chambers.

“There is an arbitration clause within the agreement that allows for arbitration to be held in Kingston, Jamaica. Such option of recourse is still open to the applicants and they can simply take that. There was no basis for the application brought before the court.

“That effectively means Busy Signal is free to move around…and he has nothing to worry about.”

Claims against Busy Signal arose after he was scheduled to perform in Zimbabwe on August 14 before cancelling the arrangement.

According to the agreement, the local promoter agreed with Busy Signal on a $55 000 fee. Longcash went on to pay a $5 500 commitment fee.

Busy Signal reportedly cancelled the agreement and instead engaged Chipaz Promotions, leading to last Saturday’s performance at the Glamis Arena in Harare.

Longcash, through Patrick Hundu, had filed an urgent chamber application seeking to recover the money and other costs including airfares and booking fees.

The firm demanded Busy Signal’s arrest to ensure that he remained within the court’s jurisdiction until the finalisation of the matter or that he paid a security fee.

Busy Signal through his manager and Turf Music Entertainment chief executive officer Galey Gordon argued that the matter was improperly before the court.

He said that their contract provided for arbitration, which was to be held in Kingston, Jamaica, in the event of a dispute arising.

“The applicant (Longcash) breached the contract between the parties by failing to honour clause 1 of the agreement, this clause specifically provides that a non-refundable deposit in the sum of $27 500 should have been paid before the 4th of June 2015, this condition precedent was not fulfilled thus occasioning a material breach of contract by the applicant thus nullifying the contract in its entirety,” Galey said in an affidavit.

He further said that Longcash had failed to attach the proof of payment on its founding affidavit, arguing that the call for Busy Signal’s arrest was a drastic measure that needed sufficient cause to be shown.

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