Cape Town - The Sekunjalo Group will take the report of the Mpati Commission of Inquiry into impropriety in the Public Investment Corporation (PIC) on judicial review.
This was revealed by Sekunjalo Investment Holdings chairperson Dr Iqbal Survé when he led a delegation to the standing committee on finance on Wednesday.
Survé took up the challenge after Deputy Finance Minister David Masondo suggested that those unhappy with findings of the Mpati commission should take legal action.
“We definitely are to take that (report) on review. We did not take it on review simply because of the fact that there were no adverse findings,” Survé said.
Earlier, Survé said the Mpati Commission did not investigate 97% of the white-owned companies that the PIC invested in even though the entity lost more than R200 billion.
Also addressing the committee, AYO chairperson Wallace Mgoqi said the commission relied heavily on evidence from unreliable witnesses.
“The commission made findings without supporting evidence. While the commission made no adverse findings against any entity within the broader Sekunjalo Group, there were statements in the report which implied improper conduct or wrongdoing with no supporting evidence in the body of the report,” Mgoqi said.
He also said the commission had perpetuated an unsubstantiated narrative that was intended to harm the Sekunjalo Group, AYO Technology Solutions, Independent Media, Sagarmatha Technologies and every company within the group.
Mgoqi said the Mpati Commission report dealt with investments made by the group, yet no adverse findings were made.
In his presentation, Mgoqi went through each of the PIC investments and disputed several references made by the commission in its report.
Survé pointed out that it was not only the PIC that invested in the group’s companies.
“The fact that we are here is because of media reports that led the president to set up the commission,” he said, adding that the terms of reference were misconstrued.
“I want to say we are discriminated against and targeted by the PIC.”
Survé told the MPs that the PIC had lost R200 billion from companies, but has not shown consistency in its bid to recover the money owed.
“We are a victim of a targeted campaign. There are hidden hands,” he said.
He urged the PIC not to be part of a racist, targeted campaign under any circumstances and that they look forward to engaging the PIC in a productive manner to safeguard the funds of the pensioners.
PIC chief executive Abel Sithole denied that they were targeting personalities.
“We deal with transactions on a case-by-case basis,” Sithole said.
Sithole detailed the amounts he said were due for payment and steps taken to recover them.
Masondo had said it was the view of the National Treasury that those who were aggrieved or unhappy with adverse findings of the Mpati Commission have legal recourse.
“We don’t think this platform and ourselves can amend the findings or set aside the Mpati commission report,” he said.
Masondo also said the PIC should be allowed to deal with the issues with the parties concerned.
“The PIC has a fiduciary responsibility to its investors … it is the PIC’s responsibility to protect and recover funds where the risk exceeds the appetite whether these companies are black or white-owned.”
However, EFF MP Floyd Shivambu said there should be a way where the National Treasury and the PIC explored mechanisms of settling some of the things in a way that was not litigious.
“There has to be a different mechanism for how this is handled. Some of these issues cant be resolved through court processes,” Shivambu said, adding that court action could come when no resolution was found.
Committee chairperson Joe Maswanganyi said the court should be the last arbiter.
“If there are ever other platforms to be used they should also be open. There is nothing that stops the stakeholders like Sekunjalo, AYO and Matome Maponya Investments to approach the executive to find a solution. The PIC accounts to the minister of finance,” Maswanganyi said.
He called for an amicable relationship between the PIC and investees.