THE National Court in Mt Hagen has dismissed a default judgment case against the State for K3 million pursued by a senior church pastor and another church elder in Mt Hagen for loss of business with a highly suspicious claim.
Acting National Court judge Justice Nemo Yalo said he could not comprehend why Rev Andrew Moime, a community leader and pastor of the Nazarene church of Papua New Guinea, could make such a claim.
Justice Yalo said the same applied to the second applicant David Tinemau, an elder of the same church.
He said he was baffled that a professional lawyer with great respect, one of Mr Gonol’s (referring to lawyer Danny Gonol of Mt Hagen-based Paulus Kunai lawyers) experience could draft pleadings of “such nature which are frivolous, or silly and embarrassing”.
“This appears to me to be nothing less than two clergymen and a learned lawyer colluding to use this court to obtain a stamp of authority from it in an attempt to make money from National Housing Corporation (NHC), a public entity, and the people of this country, through the State, the second respondent.
“Unfortunately for them, the people’s court, this court, is not snoozing for a moment,” Justice Yalo said in his 19-page ruling last Friday.
Rev Moime and Mr Tinemau filed a default judgment claim against the State for loss of business in 2006 over a property, section 24, allotment 18, in Mt Hagen.
The court heard that NHC had sold the property to Mr Tinemau.
However, it also heard that Rev Moime, who did not have any binding or legal agreement with the NHC over the sale and title of this property, then “re-sold” it to Mr Tinemau on July 28, 2004, who then “transferred” the title back to Rev Moime on Aug 2, 2004.
Justice Yalo said this was poor pleading by the applicants as it did not make sense.
“How could the second plaintiff (Tinemau) who purchased the property from the first plaintiff (Moime) transfer title back to the first plaintiff (Moime) who had just sold him the property?” Justice Yalo asked.
“The plaintiffs had also filed in their statement of claim that the property was supposed to be used for gold buying business but due to the failure by the NHC to ensure vacant possession of the property, they lost business and rental collection of K3,000 per month.
“I do not believe this.
“If the applicants possess supernatural foresight, their foresight has taken them and their lawyer too far into the space.
“In any case, I say their foresight is fraught with suspicion and embarrassment,” Justice Yalo said.
Jubilee Tindiwi from the Solicitor-General’s office defended the NHC and State, submitting that there was no legal tendering agreement, no transaction and no documents between the NHC and Rev Moime to show that he is the legal owner of the property and could seek claim against NHC and the State.
Justice Yalo said he doubted the genuineness of the case and, therefore, dismissed the entire proceedings.