The biggest losers in the VBS Mutual Bank looting saga were individual investors who had savings invested in the institution. PictureAfrican News Agency (ANA)
The biggest losers in the VBS Mutual Bank looting saga were individual investors who had savings invested in the institution. PictureAfrican News Agency (ANA)

Billion rand VBS exec won’t appeal bid to liquidate bank

By BALDWIN NDABA Time of article published Nov 5, 2018

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Johannesburg - Tshifhiwa Matodzi, the man whose investment company and associates alone allegedly looted almost R1billion from VBS Mutual Bank, will not oppose the liquidation application of the bank lodged by the regulator, Prudential Authority.

Matodzi was fingered as the main beneficiary of looting in a report titled “The Greatest Bank Heist” compiled by advocate Terry Motau, SC, after being commissioned by the Reserve Bank and Prudential Authority.

In his report, Motau said Vele Investments and its associates benefited from R936669111 while Matodzi also personally benefited from R325896831.

Last week, the Prudential Authority’s chief executive Kuben Naidoo lodged an urgent application in the High Court asking the court to liquidate VBS as it “is hopelessly insolvent, both factually and commercially”.

Shareholders and interested parties at VBS have until today to file papers to oppose the urgent application but Matodzi was adamant that he would not oppose it.

“I am not going to oppose it. I am not sure about the minority shareholders. My company Vele Investments was liquidated,” Matodzi said.

Naidoo, in his liquidation application included the report. It detailed the massive scale of fraud and corruption which took place since 2015 and allegedly masterminded by some of the shareholders and senior officials of the bank.

They looted almost R2bn and the majority of the funds had been deposited by several municipalities in Limpopo, North West and Gauteng.

“The report of the investigator, which has been made publicly available, reveals that there was wide-scale looting and pillaging of monies on deposit with VBS.

“The 2017 audited financial statements of VBS were fraudulently and materially misstated,” Naidoo said.

He said there were fraudulent misrepresentations made in the monthly returns which VBS was obliged to submit to the Reserve Bank.

“The liabilities of VBS exceeded its assets by approximately R180million and it was hopelessly insolvent as at 31 March 2017. By the time VBS was placed under curatorship in March 2018, the financial position was far worse,” Naidoo said.

He insisted that the principal beneficiary of the looting was its majority shareholder, Vele Investments.

Naidoo said there was fraudulent manipulation of VBS’s financial records and deliberate action was taken by executives of VBS “to cover up the massive cash hole in the bank”.

He said the manipulation of VBS’s operating system was done with ease by the protagonists of the extensive frauds, resulting in VBS’s largest asset not being recorded in the operating system.

“Insofar as the 2017 annual financial statements are concerned, the amount on call and at short-notice, disclosed in financials, was R770866124 which in fact was overstated by R700m due to non-existent deposits.

“In relation to Samos, which is the inter-bank operating system between various banks and the Reserve Bank, there was a massive difference in the Samos accounts of VBS and the amount reflected in the records of VBS.

“The difference between the amount shown in the VBS trial balance and the actual balance in the Samos account amounted to R410m; and notwithstanding the financials of VBS for 2017 were signed off by the audit partner, the chief executive officer and chairman of VBS, knowing of the falsities and inaccuracies contained therein,” Naidoo said.

“I recommend that urgent steps be taken to wind up VBS. It seems clear to me that there is no prospect of saving VBS. It is corrupt and rotten to the core.

“Indeed, there is hardly a person in its employ in any position of authority who is not in some way or other complicit.”

The Star

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