Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Vedanta application to stop liquidation of KCM heard in Lusaka

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The Lusaka High Court this afternoon heard Vedanta’s application to stay the winding-up proceedings which ZCCM initiated against KCM last month.

Judge Banda-Bobo has since reserved judgement.

In a statement, Vedanta said it is unable to comment on the process currently underway in the Lusaka a High Court.

It said this is in compliance with the guidance provided by Justice Banda-Bobo on 4 July 2019, after concerns were raised about the parties making public comments about ongoing court proceedings.

Last Week, the High Court in Johannesburg granted Vedanta Resources an urgent interim order blocking ZCCM from liquidating Konkola Copper Mines (KCM).

The Indian-owned mining company is fighting the Zambian government’s decision, through ZCCM-IH to appoint provisional liquidator Milingo Lungu to wind up KCM operations after government accused Vedanta of breaching the terms of its mining licence.

The interim interdict was granted after two days of argument in court last week, where Vedanta contended that ZCCM-IH had breached and continued to breach the KCM shareholders’ agreement by instituting the proceedings against KCM.

It argued that ZCCM-IH had pushed ahead with the provisional liquidator instead of reverting to the agreed-upon dispute resolution mechanism for shareholder disputes.

South African High Court Judge Leicester Adams said in a ruling seen as a big win for Vedanta that wind-up proceedings must be immediately withdrawn until a final decision is made following arbitration.

“Pending the final determination of the arbitration, the first respondent is interdicted and restrained from taking any further steps in the furtherance and prosecution of the winding up proceedings,” he said.

The granting of the interim interdict means that, pending the final outcome of an arbitration process, ZCCM-IH should immediately withdraw its winding-up proceedings.

It also means that provisional liquidator Milingo Lungu is discharged from office and leave KCM premises.

ZCCM-IH was also ordered to pay Vedanta’s legal costs for three Lawyers who applied for the interdict.

In a statement, Vedanta said it welcomed the ruling by Judge Adams and reiterated its commitment to resolving the dispute with ZCCM-IH via arbitration.

Vedanta had been locked in a dispute with the Zambian government since May when it appointed a liquidator to run KCM, which is 20% owned by ZCCM-IH and the rest by Vedanta.

However, the Zambian Government responded by saying that the ruling by the South African High Court on Konkola Copper Mines will have no effect on the liquidation processes which is going on in Zambia.

In an urgent high level Press Conference organised in reaction to the South Gauteng High Court ruling against ZCCM-IH and KCM Liquidator Milingo Lungu held at State House addressed by Attorney General Likando Kalaluka, Mines Minister Richard Musukwa and Justice Minister Given Lubinda on July 23, Government said the foreign judgments are not enforceable in Zambia until a rigorous process of registration is undertaken.

Speaking on behalf of Government, Mr. Kalaluka said the judgment was not to be circulated in Zambia as it was not only contemptuous but undermine of Zambia’s viable, working and functioning judicial system.

Mr. Kalaluka also announced that he would take the process of appealing the South African Judgement.

And Mr. Musukwa said South Africans Courts have no jurisdictions over the issues on the Zambian soil. He said the foreign judgement can only be undertaken if it’s admitted in the Zambian Courts.

Vedanta had sought the urgent order in South Africa to prevent KCM from being wound up, arguing that the dispute should be subject to arbitration, which cannot happen if the Zambian government is pursuing a new investor.

Mines Minister Richard Musukwa is on record to have said that said that it expects bids for the KCM business to be submitted within weeks by nine companies from Russia, Turkey, Australia, Canada and China.

24 COMMENTS

  1. My Swiss white wife Elisa is upset because we found out that out garden boy in Zambia called sakala who we trusted has been stealing carton boxes out of all things. However we are matitr enough to not blame all those hailing from sakala land

    • @N.e.e.z

      poor upset Elisa!
      I am sure she is upset because you call the man working your garden a “garden boy”.

  2. Mr Kalaluka is appealing a judgement that he does not recognise that “undermines our own judicial system”? Interesting! Wonders will never cease!
    Surely this govt is out of its depth.

    • Vedanta is also APPLYING for stay of winding-up proceedings when we were told there was a BINDING ORDER obtained from South africa blocking ZCCM IH from liquidating KCM

    • @Danielle, whatcVedanta is doing is ensure that KCM and the Zambian courts have no excuse for not doing the right thing. When the Arbitration hearings start, Vedanta will be able to show that they did everything in their power to have this matter resolved as per agreement. Do you think ZCCM-IH and the Zambian govt will be able to prove that they also followed the agreement? The reason we are in such a mess is that our leaders do not think beyond their immediate political considerations. ECL was out to make political points by announcing from the tarmac that “we are taking over KCM”! Is there such a provision in the agreement? Anyone who opposed that was branded “unpatriotic” and siding with Vedanta.
      While we are busy playing draughts, our friends are playing chess and have made five…

  3. Zambia is a Signatory to the International Arbitration Act and it is at its Peril to ignore the Judgement by the International Arbitration Court which sat in JHB, South Africa. The Lusaka High Court Hearing on the KCM Liquidation is now Null and Void. It has been overtaken by the International Arbitration in South Africa last week. Hearing this issue and reserving Judgement over the KCM is of no cause and effect. This is most embarrassing to the State Captured High Court Judge. Shame on her!

    • Nonsense Idi Amin showed us how to deal with Indians regarding money. An one who calls a racist ruling made in South Africa “International” is sick in the head

  4. The useless Judge is technically complying with the South African International Arbitration Court Judgement which ordered that Liquidation Proceedings in the Lusaka High Court be stopped to allow International Arbitration to proceed between Vedanta and ZCCM-IN in JHB, RSA. The Lusaka High Court Proceedings are now dead in the Water while International Arbitration has taken over. This Case has shown that Zambian Courts are now State Captured and one cannot get Justice from these Courts especially if the State is involved.

  5. But kwena, this whole thing is a mess. ‘Bids’ expected within weeks shuwa but you are nowhere near finishing disengaging Vedanta from KCM. The Chinese must be breathing down GRZ’s neck.

  6. Kalaluka and Attorney General’s chambers are a let down.How can he appeal a ruling which he claims is not enforceable until a rigorous process of registration is undertaken? Is this what they are paid for? A first year law student can do a good job than the current Attorney General’s chambers.

  7. This issue should be solted out asap.
    But whatever the outcome vedanta should never come back.
    They have no hearts for this country.
    In fact our government has taken too long to react to this.
    Anyway let’s get behind our government decision.

  8. Zambians should unite and chase these Indians out of our copper industry.
    If anything change policies regarding procurement of mining consumables, let it favour local suppliers and contractors as a means of fully benefiting from foreign investments.
    Fqml and lumwana are using their fellow whites to supply to their mines.
    Locals benefit very little from this.

    • It is the visionless leadership he are cursed to have…..

      Only KK build whole industries around our mines for supplies…the mines supported hundreds of ancillary industries and thus thousands of jobs.

      Not anymore, our mines now provide for jobs in South Africa and China.

  9. The ones commenting above are Indians, look at the way they are changing names to appear like Zambia is wrong. Anyone supporting Vedanta in the chats unless its the usual suspects on LT that do not like president Lungu don’t have African roots. Open up your eyes Zambians Kikikiki.

  10. Brother nothing of that sort is possible. All contracts go to foreigners, all loans end up remittances to foreign companies. Zambia needs a concerted effort at all levels to support fellow Zambians in all their endeavors

  11. Ha bitter hakiende h and his supporters from the under 5 club never cease to amaze me….vendetta have everything to lose because they had found a cash cow they asked the poor Zambians to milk it but they drank the milk, the stopped paying suppliers, polluted the river, imported copper cathodes from drc and pretending to melt them, made profits but declared losses…..nothing to be happy about its our country that lost….

  12. All those in UPND and HH supporting KCM will live to regret their actions. My message to all miners on Copperbelt and North Western Provinces, you can now clearly and without doubt that this UPND and HH dont represent your interests, not all. They are in full gear supporting Vendetta and KCM ignoring the sufferings and pains that these KCM owners have inflicted on your families. In 2021, please lets make a loud and clear message to HH and UPND that what they did by privatising our mines and now supporting KCM and Anglo America is so bad and painful. HH killed our mines and today, he still doesnt see anything wrong with that and he can even have the nerve to deceive us. Let HH and UPND in 2021 get ZERO votes from the Copperbelt to teach him a lesson. HH brought a lot of suffering to the…

    • “….They are in full gear supporting Vendetta and KCM ignoring the sufferings and pains that these KCM owners have inflicted on your families…..”

      Why was PF watching and abetting in this suffering all along ?????

      PF were being bribed with campaign funds to turn a blind eye to this suffering …….

  13. For a company operating in Zambia to decide to go to South Africa, what does that mean for our judicial system?

  14. As usual we Africans are barking up the wrong tree…..while the mines should be paying and employing the right amounts ….. it is the supply industries to the mines Zambia is losing out on.

    We should have whole local industries supplying the mines like in KKs time , hundreds of thousands could be employed by the industries feeding the mines to eventually start exporting finished goods

  15. The more this vedanta issue remains unresolved the more we stand to lose our market share on the global market. As a consequence of this issue resulting in the ineffective operation of the mine we are losing out on much needed income to be injected in the economy. This issue should be concluded as soon as possible without further delay. How many things must we allow to further cripple our ailing economy. We have by-elections almost every other month resulting in more unnecessary costs especially by those resigning their positions. And now the KCM saga too this is becoming too much for the country to take.

  16. AND THE WINNER IS…………………………..CHINA !!! THAT IS ALL THAT THIS TAKEOVER IS ABOUT ! WE OWE CHINA MILLIONS HOW DO WE PAY IT OFF —- BY GIVING THEM MINES !! DISGRACEFUL

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