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Judge Attacks Companies Seeking Judicial Management

A High Court judge says although the country’s economic environment creates a difficult operating environment, companies must not use this as an excuse to unnecessarily be placed under curatorship and evade their obligations to creditors.

Speaking at the opening of the High Court circuit in Gweru on Monday, High Court judge Maxwell Takuva said most companies are facing operational difficulties as a result of Zimbabwe’s current economic problems.

But Takuva said companies must not abuse the curatorship or judicial management system - which places ailing companies in the hands of care-taker management - in order to dodge honouring their obligations to creditors.

At the end of last December, the Zimbabwe Economic Policy Analysis and Research Unit (ZEPARU) revealed that 283 companies nationwide had gone into liquidation between 2009 and 2013.

Takuva also noted that there were increased divorce cases in the Bulawayo High Court jurisdiction in 2013, a trend which is similar to other parts of the country.

The High Court judge said he is happy that the High Court circuit in Gweru and Hwange was able to clear most of the cases brought before it and thanked members of the judiciary and the police for doing a good job.

Takuva, however, echoed the need for having permanent seats for the High Court in places like Gweru, adding that decentralising will help in improving the justice system.

The judge urged stakeholders like magistrates, prosecutors, lawyers and the police to work diligently in order to ensure that justice is dispensed efficiently.

He discouraged the imposition of custodial sentences on offenders saying current worldwide trends are against this form of punishment.

Takuva revealed that there are 806 fugitives in the Midlands and called upon the police to do everything they can to bring them to book.

He said failing to do so renders the justice system dysfunctional.