Daniel Nemukuyu Senior Court Reporter
Zimbabwe Republic Police High School, rated among the top academic performers in the country, is embroiled in a legal wrangle with Harare City Council over unpaid bills amounting to $347 000.
The boarding school, which charges fees of up to $1 200 per term, is battling to settle the debt. Most schools charge fees in the range of $500, but they manage to service their bills and to adequately provide for pupils.
Council, through its lawyers Mbidzo Muchadehama & Makoni Legal Practitioners, last week issued out summons at the High Court claiming $347 316. The local authority is also claiming interest, to be calculated at the rate of five percent per annum from the date of demand to the date of payment in full. Harare City Council also seeks an order for costs on a higher scale.
ZRP High, situated on Stand No. 16309 Hatcliffe in Harare, has a legal obligation to pay rates, water, sewer and other levies to the local authority in terms of the Urban Councils Act.
For some time, the educational institution defaulted on paying monthly levies and by January 11 this year, the bill stood at $347 316. Despite demand, the school has either refused or failed to pay the debt, resulting in the civil case spilling into the High Court.
“The defendant has been given the requisite notice to pay the outstanding charges in terms of Section 279 (2) of the Urban Councils Act,” reads the plaintiff’s declaration.
“As a result of defendant’s failure to fulfil its obligation, plaintiff has suffered prejudice by continuing to provide services which are not being paid for.” The school is yet to respond to the claim, but is expected to file its appearance to defend the matter within 10 days of being served with the summons.