It has been reported that the internationally acclaimed fashion designer and SABC3 reality show The Intern star David Tlale has been slapped with a lawsuit of close to R350000 over unpaid rent.
According to Sundayworld, the landlord and tenant drama has been unfolding in the South Gauteng High Court in Joburg from last month.
Olitzki Property Holdings successfully obtained a court order compelling Tlale and his company Van Der Tlale to pay up an amount of R301000 plus 10.25% interest, an additional amount of more than R30000.
The amount is likely to escalate to more than R500000 because the court ordered Tlale to cover the legal costs of the property company. According to court documents seen by Sunday World, the company said it approached the court after Tlale failed to pay rent for more than 21 months.
The lease agreement signed by both the company and Tlale says he was to use the shop space for clothing and design. The company also disclosed that there were fears that Tlale might have disappeared with the rent as his shop in Joburg was closed and the company was struggling to locate him. But Tlale, who has showcased his designs at major international fashion events including New York and Paris, told Sunday World there was a “misunderstanding” because he has never missed rent payments.
“This is just a huge misunderstanding and I don’t know why this is happening to me now because I know I paid the rent. There’s someone who is not doing their proper reconciliation,” he said.
When asked if he ran away from his landlord, Tlale denied that he absconded with rent.
“I closed the shop because I was renovating it. I’m going to reopen the shop in September after the renovations are done. Currently I’m operating from Maboneng Precinct,” he said.
Despite the court having granted an order against him, Tlale said he was not aware of the lawsuit. According to the lease agreement submitted as part of the lawsuit, it was agreed that Tlale was due to pay a monthly rental of different amounts from 2016. A monthly amount of R55000 was due for a period of 11 months from April 1 2017 to February 28 2018 .
The documents indicate that the only payment by Tlale was R32000 for a deposit. The sheriff appointed by the court to serve Tlale with the court summons had also registered that he too could not find Tlale at the shop.
He stated in his two reports that the shop was closed when he visited.