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Sakunda's Dembare mediation hits a snag

by Staff reporter
30 Jun 2022 at 06:44hrs | Views
THE mediation efforts by Dynamos' principal sponsors Sakunda Holdings are likely to yield no result as the warring parties in the long-standing ownership and shareholder wrangles remain poles apart.

Sakunda Holdings, who are pouring in close to US$1 million per season into the Glamour Boys coffers, are concerned by the historical fights, which now pit incumbent board chairman Bernard Marriot and a group of former club players and legends led by Ernest Kamba.

The danger is always there for Sakunda Holdings to put their money where ownership and control of the club are in contention. Last week they approached Marriot and Kamba with the view of bringing them to the table and resolving the issues "amicably".

The DeMbare ownership saga is currently being handled at the Harare Magistrate Courts.

However, the two Dynamos legends — Marriot and Kamba — yesterday indicated they were not prepared to take up the offer for mediation proposed by Sakunda Holdings, which could mean a protracted battle at the courts before the outcome is announced.

"Of course I received that letter which spoke about issues to do with Dynamos ownership and shareholding," said Kamba.

"Unfortunately, we are not going to do anything about that (letter) because the Dynamos constitution is very clear on the shareholding.

"There is also the Justice Malaba Judgement of 2006 which pointed us back to the 1963 constitution. The constitution spells out clearly who owns Dynamos and the shareholding structure is explained in unambiguous terms."

Kamba was elected chairman of a 10-member board of trustees that also has Sunday Chidzambwa, Eric Aisam, Cremio Mapfumo, David George, Moses Chunga, Clayton Munemo, Labani Kandi, Makwinji Soma-Phiri and Gina Kapfunde.

The group of players have challenged Marriot's claim of 51 percent shareholding in Dynamos. The former players also claim that Dynamos was being run outside the provisions of its constitution.

They reckon that order should return to the club by reverting to the Justice Malaba Supreme Court judgement of 2006, which ruled that the club should be run in accordance with the founding constitution of 1963.

"It's sad that the prescriptions provided in the Malaba Judgement have not been followed. The constitution has been trampled upon. It's only the Dynamos members who can alter the cub's constitution.

"The document has never been changed and it must be adhered to. The only time we attempted was in 2008 and that was the turning point which brought most of the problems we are facing today.

"We had followed all the procedures to call for the Annual General Meeting and elections were held according to the club's constitution.

"The people who were elected into the office went and registered their names at the registrar of companies as the bona fide board members but then violence was unleashed on them and their names were fraudulently replaced.

"We have the papers to support what I am saying. That blatant criminality, which brought us to where we are today, started then.

"I can tell you those people that claim to be the legitimate owners of the club can't produce the minutes that brought them into those positions. It's up to them to prove their legitimacy.

"But what I can only say is we had fresh elections on March 22 this year in accordance with the Dynamos constitution and the Malaba Judgement and those elected must be allowed to take up office," said Kamba.

However, Marriot has long held that Dynamos ceased to be a community club via a resolution passed during the 1998 AGM.

According to Marriot, things changed in 1999 when the original founding fathers, concluding him, registered a private company which now controls the club.

And, as the sole surviving members of the Glamour Boys founders, Marriot has been chairman of the company's board for the past few years. Marriot acknowledged Sakunda's mediation efforts but was not in a position to give his stance towards that.

"Unfortunately, I am not feeling well at the moment. But I can direct you back to the people who wrote that letter. As for now there's nothing from me," he said.

However, his lawyer Herbert Mutasa said they are supposed to meet today to deliberate on the mediation proposals.

DeMbare sponsors Sakunda Holdings, in their efforts to see peace prevailing and also getting a good return on their investment, have proposed professional mediation to assist the warring factions so that permanent solutions are found and allow the club to attract more partners. Chimuka Mafunga Commercial Attorneys wrote to the factions urging them to amicably resolve the shareholder and management disputes, as a matter of urgency.

"We refer to the above matter in which we act for and on behalf of the club Sponsors. We confirm that several meetings were held by the Sponsors' representatives and the club's warring camps from around September 2021 to June 2022 whereat the Sponsors sought to help resolve the current impasse involving the shareholding of the club.

"That notwithstanding, it appears that the historical issues have not yet been resolved. The Sponsors take the view that the quick and final resolution of the shareholder disputes is crucial to the smooth running of the club for the benefit of the shareholders, management, fans and the entire constituency of stakeholders," wrote Norman Chimuka.

"Considering the current situation, we are instructed to propose that a mediation process be conducted involving all the parties in dispute to allow for a resolution of the historical issues.

"The mediation process will be conducted without prejudice to any rights that each of the parties have and will have no effect on any past or present legal proceedings involving the parties. The parties can consult their professional advisors for guidance and representation in the whole process.

"Should the parties be amenable to the above proposal, we propose that the mediation be conducted by Advocate T. Magwaliba of Advocates Chambers and any Retired Judge(s) appointed by any of the following arbitral institutions in Zimbabwe:

- Africa Institute of Mediation and Arbitration (AIMA), or;

- Alternative Dispute Solutions Centre (ADSC), or;

- Harare Commercial Arbitration Centre (CAC).

"We advise that the Sponsors take a serious view to the resolution of the impasse as it affects any future sponsorship deals. May we hear from you regarding the above proposal at your earliest convenience. We now await to hearing from you."

Source - The Herald