Economic Development Minister Ebrahim Patel has told Members of Parliament that the court action to recover millions from Shiva Uranium has yet to be concluded.
In a written reply released on Monday, Patel responded to a question from Democratic Alliance (DA) MP Patrick Atkinson on the status of the R250-million loan that the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) gave the company, and when it would be repaid.
Earlier this year, Shiva Uranium was one of eight Gupta-owned companies that underwent business rescue processes, with a couple of prospective buyers already in the bidding.
Patel reminded Atkinson that the matter of Shiva Uranium and the IDC loan were subject to ongoing litigation.
“We currently await the conclusion of that process,” Patel said.
“With respect to reference to litigation, this means that the IDC has instituted legal action to recover the R37.5-million as well as the R250-million in accrued interest,” said Patel.
Patel said the R37.5-million was what remained of the original principal amount of R250-million.
Oakbay Resources had repaid a total of R212.5-million and the accrued interest remained at R250-million, he added.
The IDC debt stems from a R250-million loan to Oakbay in 2010 to buy its uranium mine, which was subsequently renamed Shiva Uranium. Controversially, a contractual amendment meant R255.5-million in capitalised interest was traded for shares in 2014.
“This matter is now subject to litigation in an effort to recover IDC’s exposure of R287.5-million. The R287-million is made up of R37.5-million remaining capital of the original R250-million loan and R250-million return on the original loan,” said Patel.
Patel said he had received the information in his reply from outgoing IDC CEO Geoffrey Qhena who had announced last week that he was stepping down from the IDC. — Fin 24