The acting chief executive officer of Africa’s largest fund manager has been suspended, following a series of problems for the organization.
Matshepo More was barred Tuesday due to claims that she interfered with an inquiry that suspected the $138.8 billion Public Investment Corporation of wrongdoing. The firm’s board made the call to “ensure free participation of staff in the Commission of Inquiry process,” slotting Executive Head of Properties Vuyani Hako into More’s role.
More has been at the interim post since November, when the former head, Dr. Dan Matjila, resigned at the board’s discretion when it began to question his leadership.
It is unclear if More would either remain acting CEO or revert to her old role as chief financial officer when her suspension is lifted. United Democratic Movement leader Bantu Holomisa, who has openly criticized the organization, said she should testify if she believes her innocence.
“The allegations that she was interfering with witnesses was very serious but as far as the other allegations by her colleague, she has a right to go and testify and refute those,” the party head said on the Karima Brown Show, a South African political podcast.
This adds to the troubled times the asset manager, and More, have recently faced. Nine directors resigned last month after tensions with her came to a head. Additionally, there have been a variety of claims against questionable investments the Public Investment Corporation has made in bonds from floundering state energy producer Eskom Holdings SOC, and a large stake in small tech firm Ayo Technology Solutions believed to be overvalued.
The firm also fired Paul Magule, its previous executive head of risk, last year for “incompetence.” Magule was implicated in a separate scandal of VBS, a small national mutual bank, at which he was a board member. The incident led to the bank’s collapse in November.
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