JOHANNESBURG - The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (Outa) has called on the South African Reserve Bank (Sarb) to ensure that Gupta related funds in the Bank of Baroda (BoB) are not moved offshore.
“OUTA believes public and business pressure was brought to bear against the Bank of Baroda for its continued services to the controversial Guptas,” Wayne Duvenage, Outa’s CEO said in a statement.
The Bank of Baroda has come under increasing public scrutiny over its continued links with the Guptas, who now have very limited banking options left in South Africa.
In September, Outa got an interim order freezing the rehab funds for the Gupta mines which are held in the Bank of Baroda. The Guptas are opposing this action. The matter is now due to be heard in court in May for a final order, the Outa statement read.
"The rehab funds are for the Gupta mines but are required by law and are effectively for the public benefit, not for the private use of the mine owners, and OUTA’s action is aimed at preventing misuse and looting of these funds. Due to Outa’s action freezing the rehab funds, the Bank of Baroda will need court approval to move those funds to another bank, "Outa's statement further read.
Outa’s said their legal team will be making contact with the Sarb to ensure that the rehab funds do not go missing and that the "Guptas are not able to use the Bank’s closure to move those or the funds in their other accounts out of the country."
“We believe the Reserve Bank will ensure the necessary rules and regulations will apply to protect the interests of all parties in the Bank’s departure. This includes securing the rehabilitation funds for the Gupta mines which OUTA had frozen last year,” Duvenage concluded.
- BUSINESS REPORT ONLINE