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Chickens had to come home to roost for Maponya, says Matjila

 

 

Former Public Investment Corporation (PIC) boss Dan Matjila has described businessman Kholofelo Maponya as having ”very little respect for good governance”.

Maponya is suing the PIC and SA Home Loans for R45-million in transaction fees which he says are due to him for work in a deal where the PIC invested R9-billion in SA Home Loans.

READ MORE: Allegations about dealings with SA Home Loans are malicious — Matjila

Giving testistimony on Monday at the commission probing alleged impropriety at the PIC, Matjila said that Maponya was removed as chief executive of poultry producer Daybreak Farms following a forensic investigation that found that there was maladministration and “lack of respect for governance on the part of Mr Maponya”.

In May, head of impact investing at the PIC, Roy Radjah told the commission that the state asset manager in 2015 provided R1.2-billion in funding to agricultural services group Afgri to purchase Daybreak shares.

Radjah said the PIC had been approached by Maponya on behalf of a consortium, Maponya Matome Investments (MMI).

The PIC took a 36% stake in Daybreak while Afgri held 54% and 10% was held by staff.

The poultry firm was technically insolvent just six months after the PIC’s investment, reporting a R28-million loss. Matjila told the commission that the PIC decided to replace Maponya with someone who would stabilise operations at Daybreak so that the PIC could “protect its investment”.

“He was running things as if he was the board and everything. He set up many other things, made changes without the approval of the board which unfortunately did not contribute to the company,” said Matjila.

“We had to intervene. We removed Mr Maponya and replaced him with Mr Tinus de Jonge while looking for a more suitable individual,” he said.

Maponya was eventually replaced by former Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) commissioner Boas Seruwe.

“Daybreak Farms is now profitable and making a significant contribution to transformation in the poultry industry,” Matjila said.

He said the biggest failures with respect to the Daybreak transaction had been the failure of governance at the concern.

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Thando Maeko
Thando Maeko is an Adamela Trust business reporter at the Mail & Guardian

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