Choppies Enterprises Limited has announced that they have ‘amicably’ agreed to resolve and settle all disputes with Nanavac Investments over the ownership of Choppies Supermarket Zimbabwe.
As part of the deal, the family of former Zimbabwe Vice-President Phelekezela Mphoko and Siqokoqela Mphoko (shareholders in Nanavac Investments) have agreed to cut all ties and interest with the supermarket. This was revealed in a statement released by Choppies yesterday (Monday).
“Choppies Enterprises Limited would like to inform all its stakeholders that Honourable Phelekezela Mphoko and Mr Siqokoqela Mphoko have amicably and conclusively resolved and settled all issues, matters, cases and disputes with Nanavac Investments Private Limited, trading as Choppies Supermarket Zimbabwe, such that there are no outstanding issues between them and the company.
The Mphokos have disinvested in Nanavac Investments (PVT) LTD Choppies Supermarket Zimbabwe, and have no further interest in the company and its business. Choppies Zimbabwe is now fully owned by Choppies Enterprises Limited,”reads the statement.
Choppies CEO Ottapathu Ramachandran is quoted in the statement welcoming the new developments and further adding that this will allow the company to explore other business opportunities in Zimbabwe as well as increase its footprints around the African continent.
Last year, Ramachandran, dragged Phelekezela Mphoko’s son, Siqokoqela and his wife Nomagugu before the Bulawayo magistrate court on allegations of defrauding Choppies Supermarkets in Zimbabwe. Siqokoqela was being slapped with 170 charges of fraud while his wife was facing 49 counts of extorting money from Choppies Supermarkets.
Court documents filed by Ramachandran argued that the Mphoko family made no financial contribution to the company except their Zimbabwean nationality but they became ungrateful and usurped illegal ownership of the enterprise and went on to draw large sums of money from the company through fraud and extortion.
It was revealed that Ramachandran was forced to engage Mphoko as part of the business because at the time, former President Robert Mugabe had enacted a law (Indigenisation Law) that places supermarkets under the reserved sector where foreigners could not run businesses in Zimbabwe without reserving 51 percent shareholding to citizens.