Guma’s slippery OIL woes

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  • Guma’s company sued for failing to pay loans
  • BDC claims P15million in loan debt
  • FNB claims P24million in loan debt
  • Unibulk Botswana wants P92million for breach of contract

SONNY SERITE

Financial institutions have turned up the heat on United Refineries Botswana (URB), a crude oil manufacturing company belonging to Member of Parliament for Tati East Guma Moyo and his business associates Tiedze Bob Chapi, Mmoloki Tibe and their associated companies.

According to a filing notice presented before Gaborone High Court Judge Justice Tafa by First National Bank of Botswana (FNBB) through its lawyers, Bookbinder Business Law, Guma Moyo is cited as second defendant after URB with other defendants being Eiffel Flats (Pty)LTD, Mmoloki Tibe, TEC (Pty) LTD, Profidensico (Pty) LTD and Tiedze Bob Chapi.

FNBB is seeking judgment against Guma, his company and business associates in the total amount of P24, 422,168.91, jointly and severally, the one paying and the other to be absolved. The bank also wants the Court to make an order declaring properties belonging to the defendants specially executable.

According to particulars of the first claim made by FNBB, the bank entered into a written agreement of loan terms with URB in July 2016, and the company was given an overdraft of P10million for working capital purposes. URB was to pay interest to FNBB at a rate equal to the Bank’s prime lending rate prevailing from time to time (at the time it was 7.50% per annum) plus 4 percent compounded monthly on the outstanding amount and calculated on daily overdrawn balances.

FNBB has indicated in their Court papers that URB ‘‘breached the terms of the Loan Agreement by failing to make payment when due’’. The Bank further revealed that despite taking delivery of lawful demand, Guma’s company failed, neglected and/or refused to make payment of moneys due in terms of the overdraft facility under the Loan Agreement, the balance of which was in the sum of P13, 114,645.32 as at 14 June, 2018.

On the second claim, FNBB has indicated that still in July 2016, URB represented by Mmoloki Tibe, received a certain term loan facility in the sum of P7, 811,313. The third claim still from FNBB is that in July 2016 URB received a loan of P7, 613,235 and as at 14 July 2018 the company had failed to pay the balance of the loan which stood at P4, 038,573.74.

According to court documents filed by FNBB, on or about 11 February 2014, Guma Moyo signed a written agreement of suretyship where he bound himself to and in favour of URB as surety and co-principal debtor jointly and serially with his company for the due payment by the company of all or any monies which URB may then from time to time thereafter owe to FNBB. Other defendants also signed off their properties to FNBB as sureties.

Botswana Development Corporation (BDC) has also instituted a legal summons against Guma, Tibe, Chapi and their companies, URB and TEC Pty LTD seeking payment of P15, 946,235.63 plus interest fixed at 13.25%, on a nominal annual basis, compounded monthly and further Default interest at 3%.

According to a filing notice submitted before High Court Judge Justice Leburu by Desai Law Group on behalf of BDC, the BDC represented by its then Acting Managing Director Montle Phuthego and URB represented by Mmoloki Tibe, entered into a written agreement of loan terms on 12 November, 2013 whereof BDC loaned and advanced to URB the sum of P11, 000,000. TEC Pty LTD, a company belonging to Chapi, made a First Surety Mortgage Bond over the land and improvements thereon over plot 32247 in Francistown valued at P13, 750,000. On or about 12 June, 2014 the parties entered into an amendment loan where TEC Pty LTD signed off Lot 43555 in Francistown  as a First Surety Mortgage Bond , valued at P9,680,000.

BDC lawyers note that due to continuing defaults and several consultations between BDC and URB it became apparent that URB was failing to service the loan, unless there was an intervention, to facilitate proper management of the loan account. The parties agreed to restructure the loan agreement. ‘‘In between the parties dealings the First Defendant changed its name from United Refineries (Proprietary) Limited to United Refineries (Botswana) (Proprietary) Limited’’, the court papers reveal.  BDC has approached the Court demanding payment of P15, 946,235.63 in arrears accumulated as at 1 August ,2017, plus interest fixed at 13.25%, on a nominal annual basis.

Guma’s embattled company is also being sued by Unibulk Botswana which is demanding a payment of P92, 988,000 with interest thereon at the rate of 10% per annum from the date of judgment to the date of full and final payment.  According to writ of summons issued by Desai Law Group on behalf of Unibulk Botswana, on or around 1st May, 2015 and 2nd March, 2017, URB and Unibulk Botswana entered into product supply agreements in terms of which Unibulk sold and delivered to URB crude sunflower oil, refining chemicals and other products at URB’S special instance and request.

In furtherance of the agreement between the two parties, Unibulk duly supplied to URB the crude sunflower oil, refining chemicals and other products. As at 12 May, 2018 the balance outstanding was in the sum of P22, 022,984.19. Court records show that despite demand, URB has failed, refused and/or neglected to pay the debt. ‘‘Owing to URB’s none adherence to supply agreement between the parties, Unibulk suffered loss of profit in the sum of P92, 988,000,’’ the writ of summons states.

Unibulk has as such made a claim of P22, 022,984.19 in outstanding balance of the invoice of delivered goods. They want a further P92, 988,000 as payment for loss of profit.

Reached for comment, Guma Moyo refused to comment on the lawsuits and referred this reporter to court for details on the cases. URB Managing Director Mmoloki Tibe did not respond to our enquiries.