Africa-focused low cost carrier fastjet  said it has begun proceedings in the English High Court seeking a declaration it has fulfilled its obligations under a sales and purchase agreement last year with Donald Smith.

Specifically, it wants to establish definitively Smith has been paid in full for his shares in Fly540, a forerunner to fastjet.

It is also seeking an order that Smith immediately hands over “all the necessary documents” to complete transfer of control of Fly540 Kenya to fastjet.

Chairman David Lenigas said: "We are always reluctant to take legal action to enforce a contract, so we are disappointed that the company has had to resort to this measure to force Mr Smith to complete his part of the commercial transaction that he agreed and signed off in June last year.

“The company has paid Mr Smith a fair and reasonable price for his controlling interest in Fly540 Kenya and we expect to receive in full what we have paid for."

"fastjet is adamant that Mr Smith has been paid his full consideration and we will now ask the High Court of Justice to rule on this matter."

"We sincerely hope that the process will be dealt with speedily, so that the unnecessary and apparently contrived confusion surrounding control of the Kenyan operations can finally be put to rest."

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