State challenges K270 billion Mulli claim

State challenges K270 billion Mulli claim

The State through Attorney General (AG) Thabo Chakaka Nyirenda has filed an application in the High Court of Malawi, challenging businessperson Leston Mulli’s K270 billion claim from government.

Mulli and five of his businesses filed the suit against the State, demanding K270 billion for losses suffered over a three-year period from September 5 2012  under the Joyce Banda administration following an alleged ban on government business to companies belonging to him.

Leston Mulli

But in an application filed last Friday, Nyirenda asked the court to strike out the proceedings with costs based on points of law.

He argued that the claimants failed to comply with the strict provision of Section 4 of Civil Procedure (Suits by or against the Government or Public Officers) Act.

The AG further argued that the present matter cannot be brought to court now, saying more than six years has elapsed since the cause of action arose.

Wants case thrown out: Nyirenda

Reads Nyirenda’s sworn statement in part: “Prior to the commencement of the present matter, the claimants failed and/or neglected to give a mandatory three-month notice of intention to sue government to the defendant as required under Section 4 of the Civil Procedure (Suits by or against the Government or Public Officers) Act (Cap. 6:01 of the Laws of Malawi).

“It is the defendant’s firm belief that allowing the claimants’ action to proceed with the present action will not only defeat the essence of the principle behind limitation period but also violate the defendant’s right to fair trial as it is experiencing great difficulties to secure evidence and witnesses to disprove the claimant’s claim.”

When the court convened for the hearing of the matter before Judge Allan Muhome yesterday, one of the claimants’ lawyers Gonjetso Dikiya asked for an early adjournment.

He said the defence had just been served with the AG’s application on Monday and that they needed more time to go through the application.

In his ruling, Muhome granted the claimants’ wish and adjourned the matter to May 24 2024 where he will make a determination on the AG’s application.

Mulli, through his lawyers, argues that following a restriction letter on September 5 2012 issued by then minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs, who was also the AG, government ministries, departments and agencies stopped trading with his businesses.

But through another letter dated August 6 2014, the Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs lifted the restriction.

Mulli’s businesses that he claims suffered losses include Mulli Brothers Limited (MBL) and Celcom Limited, among others.

The post State challenges K270 billion Mulli claim first appeared on Nation Online.

The post State challenges K270 billion Mulli claim appeared first on Nation Online.