Our con­cerns fo­cus on three as­pects of the ar­ti­cle:

Finweek English Edition - - RIGHT OF REPLY -

THE MIS­RE­PORT­ING OF THE PRIN­CI­PAL OF­FI­CER’S RE­MU­NER­A­TION Your as­ser­tion that the prin­ci­pal of­fi­cer’s re­mu­ner­a­tion for the year 2012 was R 4.8m is in­cor­rect as that amount in­cludes fees paid to the cu­ra­tor dur­ing the pe­riod.

The cur­rent prin­ci­pal off icer was ap­pointed with ef­fect from 1 Jan­uary 2012, and his re­mu­ner­a­tion for the FY2012 was R2.2m as dis­closed in the au­dited an­nual fi­nan­cial state­ments.

The scheme was placed un­der cu­ra­tor­ship on 27 May 2011. The fees re­flected as prin­ci­pal off icer re­mu­ner­a­tion for the FY2011 in­clude fees paid to the cu­ra­tor amount­ing to R1.9m for the pe­riod May to De­cem­ber 2011. The cu­ra­tor­ship con­tin­ued dur­ing 2012 and was lifted by a court or­der on 31 Au­gust 2012. The to­tal fees paid to the cu­ra­tor dur­ing this pe­riod were R2.5m. This fact was also dis­closed in the au­dited an­nual fi­nan­cial state­ments of the scheme as cu­ra­tor fees.

The pay­ment in re­spect of cu­ra­tor fees and the re­mu­ner­a­tion of the prin­ci­pal of­fi­cer were com­bined as per the com­pli­ance re­quire­ment of the Coun­cil for Med­i­cal Schemes.

THE MIS­IN­TER­PRE­TA­TION OF THE DROP IN SOL­VENCY RA­TIOS Your ar­ti­cle places the sus­tain­abil­ity of the fund in doubt by ask­ing “whether such schemes are sus­tain­able in the long run?” and states that “the Boni­tas sol­vency ra­tio has steadily eased to 35.5%”.

Boni­tas has re­ported the fol­low­ing sol­vency ra­tios and net sur­pluses (i.e. bot­tom­line re­sults) over the pre­vi­ous three years: As the ta­ble demon­strates, Boni­tas has pre­served a healthy sol­vency ra­tio, which is sig­nif­i­cantly greater than the statu­tory re­quire­ment, and has man­aged to suc­cess­fully man­age the sol­vency within a nar­row range of less than 2% as per our strat­egy. This also shows that the fund has ex­pe­ri­enced sur­pluses ev­ery year since 2010.

The in­crease or de­crease in sol­vency ra­tio can­not sim­ply be at­trib­ut­able to the “op­er­a­tional loss”. Un­der­ly­ing fac­tors that are be­yond Boni­tas’ con­trol, such as re­turns on in­vest­ments, also play a role in de­ter­min­ing the ex­tent to which the Scheme is able to main­tain sol­vency lev­els.

By com­par­i­son, the sol­vency ra­tios in re­spect of the 10 largest open en­rol­ment med­i­cal schemes as re­ported for the past three years are ev­i­dent in Ta­ble 2.

De­spite hav­ing a large ben­e­fi­ciary base, Boni­tas has con­sis­tently main­tained an ex­tremely high level of sol­vency.

Boni­tas’ sus­tained f inan­cial strength has al­lowed the Board of Trustees to grant nu­mer­ous ben­e­fit en­hance­ments to mem­bers over the past few years along with very rea­son­able con­tri­bu­tion in­creases. The point should also be made that it is not in the best in­ter­ests of our mem­bers to main­tain ar­ti­fi­cially high sol­vency ra­tios. Boni­tas bal­ances the need for im­ple­ment­ing con­tri­bu­tion in­creases against the need for main­tain­ing a pru­dent sol­vency ra­tio which is com­fort­ably

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