Century seeks settlement with creditors


Shakeman Mugari

CENTURY Holdings is allegedly making overtures to strike an out of court settlement with Century Discount House (CDH) liquidator, Cecil Madondo of Tudor House Consultants, over a whopping

$44 billion claim made by the liquidator against the bank.


Century is understood to have met with the liquidator and the lawyer for CDH creditors last week as part of the bank’s efforts to avoid a gruelling court battle. An insider who attended the meeting said the parties discussed the possibility of an out of court settlement.


Sources say the parties will also be meeting in the near future to chart the way forward.


Madondo last month launched a staggering $44 billion claim on Century Holdings on behalf of CDH creditors. In his initial report, the liquidator also said there was a possibility of an out of court settlement with Century Holdings.


“It should be noted that an outside court settlement with Century Holdings Ltd is also possible in the best interest of all stakeholders,” said the report.

Yesterday Madondo confirmed to the Zimbabwe Independent that he had a meeting with Century Holdings last week but refused to give details.


“We had a meeting but the meeting is so confidential that I cannot give details,” said Madondo. “I refer you to our lawyer. He is the one who knows what to give you.”


Century Holdings said the nature of the talks was to brief the liquidator on its plans as advised previously through the cautionary statement. The company also confirmed having held several meetings with the liquidator of the discount house and other interested parties. Asked on the possibility of an out of court settlement, Century said the matter was now before the court and therefore sub judice.


The multi-billion dollar claim emanates from the fact that since Century Holdings’ sale of CDH to ENG Capital Investment had not been sanctioned by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, Century could still be held accountable for creditors’ funds.


The liquidator also claims that Century Holdings maintained a residual interest in the discount house through its management contract with ENG.

To buttress his claim against Century, the liquidator instructed his lawyers, Costa and Madzonga, to seek an opinion from Senior Counsel Advocate Adrian de Bourbon.


In his 10-page opinion, de Bourbon said the liquidator of CDH had a valid claim against Century Holdings, Mike Nyamazana and Richard Muvirimi (directors of the institution) in terms of section 318 of the Companies Act.

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