Grootfontein municipality sued by contractor

Tujoromajo Kasuto

Grootfontein Town Council is being sued by Otjomuise Construction for allegedly failing to pay over N$1.4 million for the resealing and maintenance of selected roads in the town this year.

According to court documents, the construction company is suing for payment in the amount of N$878,940.53 and interest calculated from 18 March 2022 to date of final payment.

Additionally, payment in the amount of N$ 647 095.83 and Interest, calculated from 8 April 2022 to date of final payment.

According to court papers, the council issued a public invitation for bids for the award of the contract for resealing and maintenance of selected roads in the town of Grootfontein in September 2021.

Following submission of a responsive bid for the tender by Otjomuise Construction, the company was awarded the tender by a letter dated 05 November 2021.

In November 2021 the plaintiff, represented by Kamosho Peya and the town’s suspended Chief Executive Officer, Kisco Sinvula concluded the contract (Form of Agreement) for the completion of the resealing and maintenance of selected roads in Grootfontein in respect of the tender.

The contract amount for the job was N$5,075,960.28 including Value Added Tax.

The commencement date for the contract was 22 November 2021 and the completion date was set for 6 June 2022.

CEPM and Partners Engineers were appointed as the project supervisor for work completed and remuneration for construction was agreed upon in monthly payments, based on the measurements done and certification within thirty days by the supervisor.

‘’The Plaintiff in compliance with the contract furnished the council with the performance guarantee, fulfilled all the conditions of appointment as set out in Annexure A and commenced with the execution of the works in accordance with the specifications of the Tender documents and the contract,’’ the documents presented to court read.

However, the town council has allegedly breached the contract by refusing and/or failing to make payments due to the plaintiff within the times prescribed under the conditions of the contract.

‘’On or about 17 February 2022 the supervisor certified claim number No.2 as measured by the plaintiff, in the amount of N$878,940.53. A copy of certificate No.2 and all supporting documents is attached hereto and marked ‘’Annexure C”, and the original document was submitted to the Defendant during February 2022,’’ the plaintiffs submitted in his claim of particulars.

Further adding that, ‘’as pleaded above, the defendant is in terms of the contract obliged to pay the

amount due in terms of the certificate No. 2 within 30 calendar days from the date of certification by the supervisor. Noting the aforegoing, payment in terms of certificate No.2 became due on or about 17 March 2022. Despite lapse of time and written demand by the plaintiff, the defendant refuses to pay the amount due in terms of certificate No.2. The letter of demand is attached hereto and marked ‘’Annexure D,” the document reads.

The council through its lawyer Henry Shimutwikeni have filed for a notice to defend the action filed by Otjomuise Construction.

The case is set to appear in the High Court on 6 September 2022 before Judge Shafimana Ueitele and the plaintiff is represented by Felicita Gaes from Uanivi Gaes Incorporated.

By Observer