HomeNewsDiamond saga takes new twist

Diamond saga takes new twist

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ZIMBABWE Mining Development Corporation’s (ZMDC) diamond mining firm Marange Resources and the now-defunct Core Mining and Mineral Resources’ relationship was based on a contractual agreement signed by the companies to form a joint venture — Canadile Miners — it has emerged.

REPORT BY CHARLES LAITON SENIOR COURT REPORTER

The agreement — dated July 24 2009 — between Marange Resources and Core Mining, was signed after Mines minister Obert Mpofu and the Attorney-General’s office ratified it, paving way for the establishment of the new company Canadile Miners.

Parties to the agreement were –ZMDC as Marange Resources guarantor, Marange Resources (Pvt) Limited, Core Mining and Minerals (Pvt) Limited, Subithry Naidoo and Licht Yehuda as Core Mining guarantors.

The agreement, however, stipulated that any dispute or differences that might arise between the two partners would be referred to an arbitrator for determination.

“Any dispute or differences which may arise as a result of the interpretation or application of this agreement which cannot be amicably resolved within a period of 30 days shall be referred to arbitration in terms of the Arbitration Act,” the agreement reads.

“The arbitration shall take place under the auspices of the Commercial Arbitration Centre at Harare . . . the parties shall agree on a single arbitrator within seven days of the matter being referred to arbitration, failing which the arbitrator shall be appointed by the President of the Law Society of Zimbabwe (LSZ).”

Core Mining director Lovemore Kurotwi’s lawyer Beatrice Mtetwa has since written to LSZ seeking the appointment of an arbitrator in a dispute which has already been criminalised by the State.

Kurotwi is currently on trial on allegations of causing potential prejudice of $2 billion to government following his firm’s reported failure to inject the said amount into the joint venture company.

His trial, alongside former ZMDC chief executive Dominic Mubaiwa, continues on January 18 next year.

According to the agreement gleaned by NewsDay yesterday, there was no mention of a $2 billon figure which the State claimed Core Mining was supposed to have injected into the joint venture.

A clause in the agreement reads: “Core Mining further undertakes to commit not less than 5% of the committed investment amount in clause 4.6.3 above, ($100 000 000) specifically $5 million for the joint venture company and more specifically within a 30-day period from the effective date to finance the local requirements of the joint venture.”

It further said: “Subject to project requirements over the life of the joint venture company, the incurrence by Core Mining of expenditure of an amount of $100 000 000, provided that such an amount shall be incurred by Core Mining in accordance with the business plan.”

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