THE LUSAKA High Court has thrown out an application by Fred M’membe for an injunction to restrain Investrust Bank from handing over assets held in securities in connection to the debt owed by the Post Newspaper.
High Court Justice Winnie Mwenda said Mr M’membe had no locus standi to make any claim or speak on behalf of the Post Newspaper in liquidation when there was a provisional liquidator in the name of Lewis Mosho appointed to wind up the company.
Justice Mwenda said Mr M’membe had no legal standing to institute court proceedings against Investrust Bank Limited outside the authority of the liquidator as he claimed in his affidavit.
“It is my considered opinion that the claims do not disclose any reasonable cause(s) of action for the reason as a shareholder in the Post Newspaper Limited, the plaintiff has no locus standi to institute these proceedings on behalf of the company outside the name of the provisional liquidator, and therefore, cannot establish a clear right of relief in the action.
“I find that all the claims by the plaintiff do not disclose reasonable causes of action and that they are in effect vexatious and an abuse of court process,” she said.
She explained that the mere fact that Mr M’membe was a major shareholder in The Post Newspaper Limited did not give him the right to make any claims or interests on properties and assets in relation to the newspaper company as it was now in liquidation and under a provisional liquidator to wind up its operations.
The court has also slapped legal costs on Mr M’membe as a way of condemnation of his abuse of the court processes by litigant as guided by the Supreme Court Rules.
This was in a matter in which Mr M’membe sued Investrust Bank in connection with a consent order delivered in a related matter by High Court Justice Sunday Nkonde in which the bank applied to be joined as respondent to the winding up case of the Post Newspaper in
Mr M’membe wanted the court to declare that the action taken by Investrust in relation to the debt owed over a loan obtained by the Post was null and void, including attempts to assign such debt to the provisional liquidator.
The ruling means Investrust Bank must surrender properties held in debentures to the liquidator to facilitate for the winding up process before court.
Mr M’membe wanted the court to restrain the bank from surrendering the Post debt to the liquidator or his proxy or otherwise dealing with Mr Mosho in relation to the Post Newspaper Limited debt.