Barely a week after he was duped into paying K1.4 million in a land sale agreement, presidential advisor on unity and parliamentary affairs Symon Vuwa Kaunda has been dragged to court for failing to pay K800 000 in legal costs.
He has been taken to court alongside his son Symon Kaunda who was representing him in a case in which Mzuzu-based businesspeople Asema Jabi and Khanif Mohammed Iqbal sued him over the sale of a plot in Mzuzu.
The matter was settled through consent order on January 5 2018 at the High Court in Mzuzu, where Vuwa Kaunda was expected to pay the two K6 million by March 5 2018.
The consent order, dated January 5 2018, reads in part: “By consent of parties herein, it is hereby agreed as follows: That the Defendants shall pay the Plaintiffs the sum of K6 000 000 in full and final settlement of this matter;
“That the Defendants shall pay the said sum of K6 000 000 within 60 days from the date herein and; a sum of K2 000 000 to be paid upon execution of this consent order.”
Further, the consent order warns that default in payment shall entitle the plaintiffs levy execution on Kaunda and other defendants in the case.
According to Mbulo, Vuwa Kaunda has only paid K2 million so far, and the K4 million balance is to be paid by March 5 2018.
He said he charged Vuwa Kaunda K1million in legal fees, but the former Nkhata Bay Central legislator has only paid K200 000.
According to a statement of claim filed in the High Court in Mzuzu, the presidential adviser has allegedly been dodging to pay the balance despite several reminders.
Mbulo is thus demanding K800 000, one percent of this amount as interest, statutory collection costs pegged at K120 000, and cost of the court action.
When contacted yesterday, Vuwa Kaunda said he is going through tough socio-economic situations.
He wondered why the lawyer rushed to court when the initial case was just concluded in January and he had made a part payment.
“I cannot dispute that I owe him. He is my lawyer and I respect every decision he makes. What you should know is of late I have gone through tough situations.
“So if he thinks going to court is the best way to collect the money, it is fine by me. As a human being, sometimes you go through storms, but I believe these storms will one day settle,” said Vuwa Kaunda.
On November 29 2012, Kaunda’s son sold plot 544/312 at Katoto in Mzuzu to Jabi, who on December 11 the same year sold the plot to Iqbal.
However, Vuwa Kaunda blocked then transfer of lease to Iqbal through a letter from Sikwese and Company.
Thereafter, he began judicial review proceedings against Chief Land Officer, the Commissioner for Lands (North), leading to the settlement between Vuwa Kaunda and the plaintiffs. n