A Harare law firm, Musunga and Associates, is suing its former client Central Mechanical and Equipment Department (CMED) over unpaid legal fees amounting to $19 205.
The lawyers are also claiming interest on the $19 205, calculated at the rate of 5 percent per annum from March 31, 2016 to date of payment in full.
CMED did not oppose the summons filed on April 15 this year, prompting the law firm to apply for a default judgment. The High Court is yet to determine the latest application.
Musunga and Associates represented CMED in a High Court matter HC8721/ 14 in which the parastatal was suing First Oil (Pvt) Ltd over a botched fuel deal that cost the parastatal $3 million.
On that case, the lawyers are claiming $12 932,35. The lawyers also acted for CMED in a case in which it was suing its former managing director, Mr Davison Mhaka, over the same matter and they are claiming $3 266.
Musunga and Associates are also claiming $926 from CMED as fees for the legal work done in the labour matter involving Mr Mhaka.
When CMED was sued by another former employee, Mr B Manjengwa last year, CMED engaged the services of Musunga and Associates.
On Mr Manjengwa’s Labour Court case, the law firm charged $2 081, which is yet to be paid.
It is the lawyers’ argument that on June 14 2014, the CMED board of directors appointed Musunga and Associates to represent it in its several legal cases. Sometime in January 2016, CMED surreptitiously terminated the service contract with Musunga and Associates.
Instead, they engaged the services of another city law firm, TK Hove and Partners, to do the work. After termination of the contract, the law firm wrote a letter to CMED demanding its outstanding payment.
CMED was duly served with the letter of demand on March 31 this year together with the bill of costs but no payment was made. That resulted in the law firm taking the case to the High Court.