What Mvunon­ala said...

CityPress - - News - – Sipho Masondo

Mvunon­ala Hold­ings, through its lawyer, Ka­belo Mathopo, de­nied that the Boph­elo Ben­e­fi­ciary Fund (BBF), ad­min­is­tered by Boph­elo Ben­e­fit Ser­vices, was ex­pe­ri­enc­ing fi­nan­cial prob­lems.

“On the fi­nan­cial prob­lems al­legedly ex­pe­ri­enced by BBF, our client de­nies it is ex­pe­ri­enc­ing any dif­fi­cul­ties. There have been no prob­lems with pay­ments to ben­e­fi­cia­ries and, cer­tainly, the fi­nan­cial sound­ness of BBF or any of our client’s other sub­sidiaries has not been in ques­tion,” Mathopo said.

“This is ev­i­dent from its an­nual au­dited fi­nan­cial state­ments sub­mit­ted to the reg­u­la­tor. There are not any com­plaints sub­mit­ted to the reg­u­la­tor or the Pen­sion Fund Ad­ju­di­ca­tor by any of the ben­e­fi­cia­ries, or the funds our client is con­tracted to. In all cir­cum­stances, our client de­nies that it is ex­pe­ri­enc­ing any fi­nan­cial dif­fi­cul­ties as al­leged by City Press or its sources.”

Re­gard­ing the own­er­ship of the of­fice block on Grayston Drive and the Park­to­nian Ho­tel in Braam­fontein, Mathopo said Mvunon­ala Prop­er­ties was still in the process of “ex­e­cut­ing both deals”.

The fi­nan­cial re­la­tion­ship between Mvunon­ala Prop­er­ties and BBF is based on the val­ues of these two prop­er­ties, he said. And prop­erty in­vest­ments were not han­dled di­rectly by BBF, but by Mvunon­ala Prop­er­ties.

“For the pur­pose of fi­nan­cials, our client had to pro­vide the eval­u­a­tions – ir­re­spec­tive of where the deal process was as the pur­chase con­sid­er­a­tion had al­ready been agreed upon. Mvunon­ala Prop­er­ties was re­spon­si­ble for build­ing the whole of 72 Grayston Drive with the ul­ti­mate aim of ac­quir­ing it out­right from the Gov­ern­ment Em­ploy­ees’ Pen­sion Fund as an in­vest­ment for BBF and other funds un­der its port­fo­lio,” Mathopo wrote.

“Eval­u­a­tions or pro­jec­tions were done on a com­pleted build­ing. Mvunon­ala Prop­er­ties, there­fore, took re­spon­si­bil­ity to re­build the prop­erty at its own cost.”

The pur­chase, Mathopo said, was go­ing to be done after com­ple­tion as it would present good value for the in­vestor, and fac­tor in the costs in­curred while re­build­ing the prop­erty. While there is a lease agree­ment with Mowana Hold­ings, with the Gov­ern­ment Em­ploy­ees’ Pen­sion Fund still own­ing the build­ing, this would change once the own­er­ship trans­ac­tion has been com­pleted, he said.

Mathopo was un­able to say why both the Grayston Drive prop­erty and the ho­tel were listed as as­sets on the fund’s bal­ance sheet.

Mathopo said the ho­tel was be­ing ac­quired through Mvunon­ala Prop­er­ties.

“Funds are, there­fore, still held by Mvunon­ala Prop­er­ties with the aim of ex­e­cut­ing both deals. The li­a­bil­ity based on the fi­nan­cials is with Mvunon­ala Prop­er­ties. We are in­structed that the fund has been prop­erly au­dited, ev­ery cent be­ing fully ac­counted for by the three par­ties who have a di­rect agree­ment with the fund.”

On Bon­gani Mh­langa’s de­por­ta­tion, Mathopo said: “There is cur­rently a le­gal process pend­ing between Mh­langa and the depart­ment of home af­fairs.

“Un­der the cir­cum­stances, we are pre­cluded ... from pro­vid­ing a de­tailed re­sponse.”

He also de­nied Mvunon­ala and its sub­sidiaries were es­tab­lished with fraud­u­lent doc­u­ments.

“We are in­structed to record that the es­tab­lish­ment of Mvunon­ala As­set Man­agers and all of our clients’ en­ti­ties were done in ac­cor­dance and with due com­pli­ance with the law.

“Un­der the cir­cum­stances, our clients deny that ‘papers’ used in the es­tab­lish­ment of any of its en­ti­ties were fraud­u­lent in any re­spect,” he said.

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