The Tshwane Municipality has been ordered to accept delivery of 187 waste removal trucks it had ordered from the Moipone group of companies and to pay the group’s outstanding bills totalling tens of millions of rands.
In the latest skirmish in the ongoing legal war between Moipone and the city, acting Judge LB Vuma sided with Moipone in the High Court in Pretoria.
The judge ordered the city to accept delivery of the waste removal trucks, to pay invoices outstanding for more than 30 days within the next seven days and to issue purchase orders for managed maintenance for certain categories of vehicles to Moipone.
The city was also interdicted from appointing or buying vehicles from other service providers.
Moipone secured the five-year tender in respect of Tshwane’s fleet vehicles and fleet-related services after a year-long tender process, but the city first attempted to cancel the contract and thereafter launched review proceedings to have it set aside.
In March, Moipone obtained an interim court order compelling the city to comply with its contractual obligations and prohibiting the city from concluding contracts with any other service provider for the management and maintenance of its fleet of vehicles.
This pending the final determination of the validity or the valid cancellation of their public private partnership agreement.
When the city ignored the court order, Moipone returned to court to compel them to comply, but the city relied on a court order issued in June allowing it to use other service providers for waste removal services.
Moipone maintained the city wanted to get out of the agreement at all cost and was determined to frustrate their business operations and force it into liquidation.
The city did not dispute its liability to the group and had to date already paid R29 million of the outstanding invoices which amounted to over R85 million at the end of June.
Vuma said the city failed to advance a reasonable excuse why the invoices could not be paid within 30 days and its refusal to accept the trucks clearly flaunted its own end of the bargain to the serious financial prejudice of the Moipone group.
The judge found that the agreement was a valid contract.