God forbids injustice.
Deuteronomy 16:19, says “Do not pervert justice or show partiality. Do not accept a bribe, for a bribe blinds the eyes of the wise and twists the words of the righteous.”
That is why when the time comes, Minister of Home Affairs Edgar Lungu will be held personally responsible and liable for the unfolding injustice, anarchy and abuse of authority over the Zambezi Portland Cement (ZPC) scandal.
Instead of allowing our courts of law determine the ZPC commercial dispute, he has taken it upon himself to cripple and disadvantage the interests of Antonio Ventriglia and Manuela Ventriglia over the interest of Dr. Rajan Mathani, chairman of Finance Bank.
Firstly; Lungu deported the two who are the recognized owners of the company in unexplained circumstances, a situation that has even raised the hackles of the Zambia Episcopal Conference Bishops.
This effectively deprived them of immediate and direct control of the company, giving unfair advantaged to Dr. Mathani who has made many attempts to take over the company.
Soon after the deportation Mahtani without any authority appointed Andrew Kamanga as Chief Executive. The Ndola High Court rejected this ploy and declared Kamanga’s appointment null and void.
But this came too late as Kamanga was already in place, protected by Zambia Police. He has subsequently opened an illegal Bank Account in Finance Bank to which Billions of Kwacha are being paid from sales contrary to court rulings. This would not have happened if the Ventriglia’s were in the country.
When they tried to regain control through a court order the Police were deployed and made it impossible for lawyer Sakwiba Sikota to serve the orders ejecting Kamanga. This would not have happened if the Ventriglia’s were in the country.
Dr. Mathani then made another attempt and applied through his company Finsbury to appoint a receiver on the grounds that as a guarantor to a loan obtained by ZPC from the PTA Bank he would stand to lose if the company reneged and failed to pay the loan.
Judge Flavia Chishimba rejected the application as it would have meant legitimizing an illegal and untenable situation. She was satisfied the company owners had made adequate arrangements to run the company.
The Police again remained at the plant to protect Dr. Mahtani’s manager, Kamanga. This would not have happened if the Ventriglia’s were in the country.
Last Friday, through their lawyers in Zambia the two who have faith in the legal system went back to the Lusaka High Court and obtained a writ of possession to get back the company. Again the Police have made it impossible for the Sheriff to eject Kamanga as he is protected by Government decree- again against court orders. This against would not have happened if the Ventriglia’s were in the country.
This is hardly fair, let alone legal. Court orders have been spurned with impunity.
We hope that the Law Association of Zambia and Attorney General as the Government Chief Legal adviser are taking note of these events.
In this regard we also agree with NAREP President Elias Chipimo that Government must come clean on the matter to ensure that no corruption and illegality are behind the events that are presently taking place.
Government intervention is in essence making the courts irrelevant.