DBZ denies writing off K14billion debt

THE Development Bank of Zambia (DBZ) says it has never received instructions from any quarters to write off the money which is subject of a case involving the bank versus JCN Holdings Limited, Post Newspapers and Mutembo Nchito.

DBZ Managing Director, Abraham Mwenda said the decision to discontinue the matter was arrived at on April 18, following the advice and guidance of the Attorney-General.

Dr Mwenda clarified in a Press statement yesterday that Finance and National Planning Minister, Alexander Chikwanda, did not instruct DBZ to write off any money.

“Our understanding is that the Honourable Minister of Finance desired an opinion of the Attorney-General on wider issues of public interest touching on complaints unrelated to the merits of the case but related to the conduct of the matter and public interest issues relating to justice delivery,” he said.

Some opposition parties on Friday called for the resignation of Solicitor-General, Musa Mwenye and Mr Chikwanda alleging that the two instructed the withdrawal of a court case in which DBZ sued JCN Holdings and the Post Newspapers.

Dr Mwenda explained that the letter of undertaking was executed by the defendants guaranteeing DBZ’s right to later pursue the matter.

He said the letter, which has since been made public to avoid speculation, was obtained on advice of the Attorney General’s Chambers.

The letter of undertaking from Nchito & Nchito Advocates, dated April 18, 2012, titled, ‘JCN ETAL AND DEVELOPMENT BANK OF ZAMBIA:2009/HPC/0322’ and signed by Nchito & Nchito, states that “We refer to the captioned matter and would like to undertake that when the matter is discontinued to enable the State review our complaint we will not object to the matter being recommended should the review so determine nor make a claim for costs.”

Dr Mwenda also emphasised that there was a judgment in favour of DBZ in this case but that the bank could not comment on the merits of the same because the matter was subjudice owing to the fact that there was a pending appeal over the same.

Post Newspapers Limited and JCN Holdings have been in court with DBZ over K14 billion which the bank is claiming arising from a loan.


NOTE: the decision to write off the date was reached at on 18 April, 2012,the same day Mutembo Nchito wrote the letter of undertaking.

When was the letter delivered, same day the meeting took place? When was the DBZ board meeting called, same day, no notice? It would seem someone was in a hurry.

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