“Land Rights Confrontation”

…Court stop China Railway 7th Group from infringing on the land rights of F-NET Zambia Limited in Nakonde

By Staff Writers

The Lusaka High Court has issued a restraining order against China Railway Seventh Group (Zambia) Limited, prohibiting the company from encroaching on the land rights of F-NET Zambia Limited in Nakonde, and has halted the unauthorized use of materials for its road construction project.

F-NET Zambia Limited has filed a lawsuit against China Railway Seventh Group (Zambia) Limited, demanding immediate payment of US$5,000,000.00 as compensation for quarry stones and aggregate material extracted from its properties.

F-NET Zambia Limited also seeks an injunction to prevent further entry or use of its properties by the defendants.

This dispute arises from a contract awarded to China Railway Seventh Group (Zambia) Limited by the the Road Development Agency (RDA) for the construction of a 107 km road stretch on the Nakonde to Isoka Road, utilizing materials covered by Small Scale Exploration License number 24497/HQ/SEL, valid until July 19, 2019.

The conflict revolves around land previously under Small Scale Exploration License No. 24497/HQ/SEL, with F-Net Zambia Limited claiming rights to these tenements and pursuing legal action to prevent China Railway Seventh Group (Zambia) Limited from occupying, mining, or using the land.

After failed negotiations with the defendant and relevant authorities, F-NET Zambia Limited proceeded to file a lawsuit against China Railway Seventh Group (Zambia) Limited for infringements.

The Plaintiff seeks a court declaration voiding any agreement granting access to its tenements to the 1st Defendant and confirming its lawful tenancy and licensee status of the Small Scale Exploration License.

Additionally, F-NET Zambia Limited requests an order for the issuance of a new Small Scale Exploration License for another four-year period.

During an interparty hearing, the High Court granted F-Net Zambia Limited an interlocutory injunction against China Railway Seventh Group (Zambia) Limited regarding land occupation and use in Nakonde, Muchinga Province, prohibiting the defendant from engaging in related activities.

F-NET Zambia Limited has agreed to indemnify China Railway Seventh Group (Zambia) Limited for any damages resulting from the injunction if it’s later found to be improperly granted.

The inter-parte hearing for this application is scheduled for May 20th 2024, providing an opportunity for all parties involved to present their arguments and evidence before the court.

The legal action pursued by F-NET Zambia Limited against China Railway Seventh Group (Zambia) Limited is imperative to uphold property rights and seek due reparation.

F-NET Zambia Limited, as the proprietor of the land and holder of the Small Scale Exploration License, is duty-bound to safeguard its assets with unwavering resolve.

The unauthorized extraction of quarry stones and aggregate materials by China Railway Seventh Group (Zambia) Limited constitutes a blatant violation of F-NET Zambia Limited’s rights, necessitating resolute legal intervention.

Pursuit of compensation for the damages is imperative for mitigating financial losses and ensuring business continuity.

Thus, the stringent legal recourse undertaken by F-NET Zambia Limited is warranted, serving as an assertion of its rights and a demand for restitution while upholding property ownership and resource utilization.

The authorities’ failure to prevent China Railway Seventh Group (Zambia) Limited from operating on property rightfully owned by another party is a glaring manifestation of institutional negligence and disregard for legal norms.

Such lawlessness has no place in a civilized society governed by the rule of law. The negligence of the authorities in upholding property rights undermines the very foundation of civil order and sets a dangerous precedent for future transgressions.

Allowing China Railway Seventh Group (Zambia) Limited to operate without due regard for property ownership betray the obligation to uphold justice and protect the rights of citizens.

This egregious oversight highlights a systemic failure within the regulatory framework and demands immediate corrective action to rectify the injustice perpetrated against F-NET Zambia Limited and uphold the principles of fairness and legality in all civil affairs.

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