Coal miner hauled to court over debt

BULAWAYO - Liberation Mining (Private) Limited in Gwayi area has been dragged to court by a Harare-based engineering firm for allegedly failing to settle over US$34 400 owed in earthmoving equipment hire.

The coal mining company was established in 2006 by three Zimbabweans, Peter Mutsinya, Rainor Robinson and Gavin Von Platen who entered into a joint venture agreement with Russian investor, IR Trading, in 2017.

An engineering firm, Larytrans Engineering (Private) Limited in care of Laryscope Healthcare this week filed summons against the company at the High Court here.

Liberation mine and Wessel Vessel are cited as first and second defendants respectively.

“The plaintiff’s claim is that the defendant be ordered to compensate the plaintiff an amount of US$34 451, 67 resulting from the hire of earth moving equipment by the defendants from the plaintiff in circumstances where the defendant never paid for the hire,” reads the summons in part.

“That the defendant be ordered to pay the interests accrued from the date that defendants were supposed to settle the amount owed at the rate of five percent per annum. That the defendant be ordered to pay the costs of suit.”

In its declaration of the claim, the engineering firm submitted that on March 13, 2018, the mine through Vessel hired EXGMA Front End Loader earthmoving machinery from the engineering firm at the rate of US$55 per working hour from the plaintiff.

“The 1st and 2nd defendants then used the machine for 347 hours accruing an amount of US$19 085. The defendants only managed to pay an amount of US$8 833,33 to the plaintiff. 

“The defendants therefore remained with unpaid amount of US$10 251, 67. When the defendants failed to pay the said balance the plaintiff sought to remove his machine from the defendants yard at Liberation Mine Gwayi, Hwange, but the defendant refused to let go the machine for unknown reasons.”

In its submissions the engineering firm said it had to travel from Harare to Hwange to get the release of the machine from the adamant mining company.

“The defendants finally released the plaintiff’s machine on May 22, 2018 after it had accrued a further 440 standby hours amounting to US$24 200,” reads the submissions.

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