Rock Hard Cement Ltd threatens lawsuit

…wants retraction from TTCA president

LEGAL action may be initiated against Mikey Joseph, President of the Trinidad and Tobago Contractors Association should he fail to retract statements made by him regarding the quality of cement sold to consumers by local distributor Rock Hard Cement Ltd during a press conference on Wednesday.

In a pre-action protocol letter issued yesterday, the company called on Joseph to, in addition to the retraction, “further issue an unconditional apology in terms to be set and agreed upon by Counsel.” Should he fail to do so within 48 hours of the letter being issued yesterday, attorneys for Rock Hard Ltd said their client will be filing action at the High Court.

The letter stated that on Wednesday during the media conference, Joseph made statements which were plainly disparaging of Rock Hard Ltd’s product.

“In this said conference, the words used by you, clearly and patently sought to convey to the public at large that they ought to exercise a great degree of skepticism and apprehension before purchasing our client’s cement as a result of alleged short comings in the quality thereof. The ordinary and natural meaning of the words used were clearly meant to place my client’s product in a harsh and untruthftll light to the ordinary purchaser and further sought to paint the unsubstantiated picture that our client’ s product was not of satisfactory quality and/or fit for its specific and/or general purpose,” it stated.

The letter went to further state that it was the belief of Rock Hard Ltd that the conference was “held with the deliberate and pre-determined intention of seeking to disparage its brand and to promote that of its competitor, Trinidad Cement Limited (TCL).”

“It is interesting to note at no time before this hatchet job disguised as a press conference, did you seek to obtain from our client or any of the relevant state agencies, any appropriate literature, testing results and/or samples. You must have been fully aware that prior to the importation of cement into this jurisdiction, the Bureau of Standards, the state body charged with ensuring that the public interest is protected with regard to quality control, must give its approval. A basic enquiry with the Bureau would have revealed that our client’s cement has successfully undergone the most rigorous testing process in strict compliance and adherence to international standards at international testing institutions chosen by the Bureau. Our client’s cement has passed every test demanded by the Bureau,” the letter stated.

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