Admarc banks on mediation

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By Audrey Kapalamula:

Agricultural Development and Marketing Corporation (Admarc) has expressed optimism that its outstanding matter with Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority (Mera) over the settlement of K850 million from a procurement maize deal could be resolved through court mediation.

Admarc’s non-committal to respond to Mera’s demand notice on the matter forced Mera to seek court intervention.

Admarc Board Chairperson, James Masumbu, Wednesday confirmed receiving court summons over the matter.

“I am aware that they have taken us to court. There is a court document. We have been served with a document and I think what is remaining is for the parties to sit down. I am sure they would be invited for mediation at the commercial court and the matter could be resolved at the court,” he said.

This is part of the K2.9 billion from the Price Stabilisation Fund which Mera used to buy 10,000 metric tonnes of maize for Admarc in 2016.

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The two parties agreed that Admarc would repay the money from maize proceeds.

But Mera discovered that the grain trader could only repay K1.1 billion from the maize proceeds and managed to settle K250 million in June 2017.

Mera is yet to comment on the court matter.

But Mera Consumer Affairs and Public Relations Manager, Fitina Khonje, recently told the Daily Times that they took Admarc to court because it failed to respond to the demand notice.

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Khonje said Admarc’s failure to settle the balance has affected operations of the fund.

The release of the funds led to the firing of the then Mera chief executive officer Ralph Kamoto.

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