Nchito and Nchito’s appointment to represent KCM supported by two other directors – Mutembo 

By Staff Reporter
MUTEMBO Nchito has told the Lusaka High Court that Messrs Nchito and Nchito’s appointment to defend Konkola Copper Mines in the winding up petition was supported by two of the other four directors of the mining giant.
In this petition, ZCCM-IH has asked the Lusaka High Court to wind up KCM on grounds that  it was insolvent  and,  has failed  to pay outstanding  invoices to suppliers and contractors  as when they fall due, among other allegations .
ZCCM-IH has also accused KCM of engaging in massive tax evasion through mis-pricing and others.
The court also granted ZCCM-IH an order appointing Milingo Lungu as a provisional liquidator.
Lungu then appointed Bonaventure Mutale as lead counsel for KCM.
But KCM board chairman Srinivasan Venkatakrishnan has appointed Messrs Nchito and Nchito which Lungu has opposed, alleging that the law firm is conflicted.
Lungu also wants the court to determine whether a sole director and chairman of the board of directors of a company in liquidation has residual powers to instruct an advocate to represent a company where a provisional liquidator has been appointed.
This question is in respect to the decision by KCM board chairman Srinivasan Venkatakrishnan of London in the United Kingdom, a director in KCM, who was currently holding the position of director and CEO of vedanta Resources Limited, the parent company of Vedanta Resources Holdings Limited (VRHL) to appoint Messrs Nchito and Nchito who have since raised preliminary issues.
However, Mutembo Nchito has filed an affidavit in court, stating that his firm has been appointed by chair of KCM board of directors in exercise of a directors fiduciary duty to protect the business and in exercise of the companies residual power to defend a winding up petition, to represent KCM.
“That the said appointment is supported by two  of the other four directors of the respondent company KCM. That on June 6 this year my firm caused to be filed a notice  to raise preliminary issues which was fully served. Four days later on June 10, the provisional liquidator caused to be filed a motion and an affidavit  in support of motion to raise preliminary issues  by Milingo Lungu as a response to the one my firm caused to be filed,” Mutembo stated.
He confirmed that Messrs Nchito and Nchito Advocates no longer act for Barclays Bank PLC under cause no. 2019/HPC/0069.
“That as an officer of the court, I am obliged to bring the following information to the attention of the court that Milingo ‘s law firm currently acts for a plaintiff namely Betty Kangote against the respondent for which he has been appointed provisional liquidator. Milingo acts for the petitioner in a matter that is active in court along side Bonaventure Mutale State Counsel,” he stated.
Mutembo stated that having been appointed provisional liquidator of KCM at the suggestion of his clients ZCCM-IH,  Milingo Lungu has now appointed Bonaventure Mutale,  his co-counsel in their work for ZCCM-IH.
He stated that the motion of June 6 did not seek to vary, discharge or assail the ex parte order of May 21.
“Secondly the said motion of June 6 was presented on behalf of KCM which is a party to these proceedings and as such can not be described as a non party,” stated Mutembo.