By Panashe Machakaire
LAFARGE Cement Zimbabwe Limited has sued local transporter, Gramiso Investments (Private) Limited, over an outstanding debt amounting to $238 650.
Gramiso and Lafarge entered a prepayment agreement in which the cement manufacturing giant advanced $500 000 to the transporter.
The transport firm, according to the agreement, undertook to repay the loan through transportation services to Lafarge as and when required.
In terms of the same agreement, Gramiso would alternatively pay the amount through $50 000 monthly instalments.
However, Gramiso only paid back $261 349, leaving a balance of $238 650.
Efforts to recover the debt hit a brick wall, forcing Lafarge to seek recourse at the High Court.
Through its lawyers, Chitewe Law Practice, it issued out summons claiming the principal debt plus interest.
Lafarge also seeks an order of the court cancelling the prepayment agreement. Gramiso, together with its two directors Mrs Julie Bouckaert and Mr Robin Bouckaert, were cited as defendants in the lawsuit.
In terms of the agreement, Gramiso Investments was obliged to pay 10 monthly instalments of $50 000 or render its transporting services as repayment.
Gramiso failed to settle the debt in violation of the agreement.
“First Defendant (Gramiso) failed to make payment to plaintiff as agreed, and as at 31 July 2018, it had only paid a total amount of $261 349. 23 broken down as follows: $141 349.23 through transport services rendered and invoiced to plaintiff; and $120 000 through direct payments to plaintiff’s nominated bank account,” reads the plaintiff’s declaration.
Despite numerous demands, the plaintiff argues, Gramiso Investments has refused, failed or neglected to pay the outstanding bill of $238 650.
Gramiso Investments is yet to respond to the lawsuit.