DCA Trust has scored its 3rd victory in the .Africa case, this comes after a US court denied ICANN and ZACR’s Motion for Reconsideration regarding the Court’s Order that granted DCA Trust a Preliminary Injunction preventing ICANN from delegating .Africa until the case had been fully determined.
The court had on 14th June 2016 has granted ZACR’s Motion to Dismiss the Complaint as related to defendant ZACR only as a party in the case leaving ICANN as the only defendant answerable in the case the court was of the opinion that as a favorable ruling on its (DCA Trust) claims against ICANN will result in the relief it seeks. The court order that denied ICANN’s Motion for reconsideration and vacate Preliminary Injunction [PDF] reads:
“The Court has granted ZACR’s Motion to Dismiss in its entirety, thereby extinguishing ZACR’s role a party to the action. Therefore, the Court denies as moot ZACR’s motion for reconsideration, and addresses the motion only as it pertains to ICANN.”
ICANN withdrew its own Motion to Dismiss [PDF] against DCA Trust’s First Amended Complaint of 26 February 2016. In the current court order, the court stated that ZACR’s Motion was an
“attempt at a second bite at the apple” motion that “ nothing that ZACR presents changes the fact that DCA has shown a serious question as to the merits of its ninth cause of action or that the balance of harm weighs in DCA’s favor. The facts that the Court previously considered – irrespective of the error – support the issuance of the preliminary injunction. Accordingly, the Court should deny ZACR’s motion to reconsider and vacate”
In support of its Motion to Reconsider and Vacate Preliminary Injunction Ruling, Defendant ZA Central Registry, NPC (“ZACR”) had relied upon the declaration of its current CEO Mokgabudi Lucky Masilela (“Masilela Decl.”). However, DotConnectAfrica Trust fires back in opposition. In our previous coverage of the case, DCA stated the court should likewise disregard them and afford them little weight as they come from ZACR, a party that stands to directly benefit from the lifting of a preliminary injunction.
The court analyzed all four points raised by ZACR including factual error reliance, irreparable harm, and posting of bond. The court discussed the IRP results saying
“At this stage of the litigation, it is reasonable to infer that the IRP Panel found that ICANN’s rejection of Plaintiff’s application at the geographic names evaluation phase was improper, and that the application should proceed to the delegation phase
ICANN and ZACR in their application for reconsideration also identified a ‘factual error’ to support its arguments however, the court states that
“The Court finds that the error in its factual finding was not determinative to its ultimate conclusion that there are serious questions going toward Plaintiff’s likelihood of success on the merits.”