PIC Inquiry report clears ex-CEO Dan Matjila, black-owned companies

Published Feb 24, 2020


CAPE TOWN – The much-awaited Commission of Inquiry report into allegations of impropriety at the Public Investment Corporation (PIC) has cleared erstwhile chief executive Dr Dan Matjila.

Business Report can reveal that the report made no adverse findings against Matjila, Sekunjalo chairperson Dr Iqbal Survé and his companies, and other black-owned companies. Sources claim that Matjila was described as a credible witness and his submission to Judge Lex Mpati as impeccable.

The PIC, without confirming or denying having received the report, referred questions to the Office of the Presidency.

Presidential spokesperson Khusela Diko confirmed that the report had been sent by the President to the chairperson of the PIC Dr Reuel Khoza to give him line of sight of the issues contained therein.

“The President has also sent the same to the Minister and Deputy Minister of Finance to apprise and engage them on the findings and also to request a roadmap on the implementation of the recommendations contained therein,” said Diko.

The report found Survé's testimony to be open and credible. It also credited him for volunteering to testify.

Mpati and his assistants, Gill Marcus and Emmanuel Lediga, were instead scathing about the PIC's internal governance processes and recommended that they immediately be strengthened. 

Highly placed sources, who spoke anonymously citing the sensitive nature of the matter, said the commission also recommended that the PIC be divided into three units to enhance its efficacy and strengthen its governance processes.

The source said although not all investee companies got the “all-clear” from the commission, black-owned Lebashe, Harith, AYO Technology Solutions, Sagarmatha, Lancaster, Ascendis Health and Tosaco were among those that were cleared.

Among the allegations was that Matjila had pressured junior staff to rush certain transactions without proper due diligence. However, the commission found that it was the PIC’s own governance processes that were flawed.

“The Finance Minister (Tito Mboweni) has been called upon to revise the rules and regulations that govern the PIC to ensure more accountability among (the asset manager’s) executives,” said the source.

The report noted that the commission claimed it was somewhat restricted when it came to investigating some of the companies on its radar.

Various captains of industry said that they welcomed the outcome but declined to comment before having sight of the full report.

However, the sources said the commission recommended that the PIC be managed in accordance with the highest standard of ethics, integrity and efficiency so that its governance and investment decisions were beyond reproach.