Sofield’s appointment contested by former FHL director at AGM
Mr Sofield was not a nominee of the Minister for iTaukei Affairs
Adrian Sofield’s appointment as a director on the Fijian Holdings board was contested yesterday during its annual general meeting at the Grand Pacific Hotel in Suva. Ulai Taoi, whom Mr Sofield had replaced on the board, challenged the decision and said he wanted a re-election going into voting. FHL Group chief executive, Nouzab Fareed, told shareholders a democratic process will take place and they will go through a transparent process.
He confirmed they will go for legal advice following which they will get nominations for the position.
It is expected FHL will then have an extraordinary general meeting some times in January for the appointment of the director.
“After consultation with our legal consultant and South Pacific Stock Exchange, we have decided we will be having another EGM only for this in January or so to solve this problem,” Mr Fareed said.
“It is a normal process and business will be as usual and in this EGM we will be able to inform the public very clearly and call for nominations.” Mr Sofield was a nominee by iTaukei Land Trust Board and seconded by iTaukei Affairs Board which are A Class shareholders in FHL. They collectively own 1.6 million shares in FHL out of 10 million A Class shares. Mr Sofield was not a nomination by the Minister for iTaukei Affairs who had appointed six directors for the board as per announcement on Tuesday as B Class shareholders.
The Minister’s decision also cannot be challenged as FHL’s Articles of Association allows six appointments to be made by the Minister.
Meanwhile, Mr Fareed said overall, the shareholders were happy with the company’s performance. Another concern raised by the shareholders was that that share price for FHL was too high. Mr Fareed said shareholders were requesting for the share price to be made lower to allow new entrants to buy shares.
He said they will be looking into this.
From left: Fijian Holdings Group chief executive, Nouzab Fareed, newly-appointed director of FHL board, Bob Lyon and Adrian Sofield whose nomination as the FHL board director was contested at the FHL annual general meeting yesterday at the Grand Pacific Hotel in Suva by the director he replaced, Ulai Taoi.