Iqbal Survé welcomes Tito Mboweni’s proposal to discuss PIC disputes
Cape Town – Dr Iqbal Survé, chairman of Sekunjalo Investment Holdings (SIH) and executive chairman of Independent Media, on Monday welcomed proposals by Finance Minister Tito Mboweni for an engagement between Parliament, Sekunjalo Independent Media (SIM) and Ayo Technology Solutions regarding the ongoing disputes with the Public Investment Corporation (PIC).
During last Thursday’s briefing to the Standing Committee on Finance on the implementation of the Mpati Commission of Inquiry’s findings on the PIC, Mboweni proposed an engagement between the Committee, the Chairman of Ayo Technologies (Dr Wallace Mgoqi) and Survé on the PIC’s investment in AYO Technology Solutions and Independent Media (not Sekunjalo the group).
Mboweni said: “I think that maybe this committee should invite the chair of AYO and Sekunjalo … to have a conversation on how these arrangements were made. But I think it would be very wrong of us to tarnish the reputation of the whole of AYO or Sekunjalo organization based on this. I think it would be unfair…”
Survé welcomed the pragmatism displayed by Mboweni and said that there is a concerted effort to undermine the role played by the companies in which Sekunjalo Investment Holdings has invested, including Ayo Technology Solutions and Independent Media South Africa, to rebuild the country’s economy. “We welcome the proposal by Minister Mboweni to engage both Parliament’s Standing Committee on Finance and the PIC on the outcomes of the Mpati Commission of Inquiry.
“Whilst I cannot directly comment for AYO, I can say that since the institution of the Mpati probe, Sekunjalo Investment Holdings and Independent Media, as well as Ayo Technology Solutions, have been consistent in their position that their relationship, with the PIC has always been within the law.
“Since the institution of the probe, immense harm has been caused to these businesses. We approached the Mpati Commission voluntarily to put forward our version of events regarding the relationship with the PIC. Throughout the proceedings of the Commission we co-operated fully,” said Survé.
Survé said that since the release of the Mpati report, he has sought to engage with the PIC on the Commission’s findings as they pertain to Sekunjalo Independent Media and the Sekunjalo Group.
He said: “To date, our attempts to engage with the PIC have not borne any fruit. It is against this background that the pragmatic approach adopted by Minister Mboweni is welcomed. We also stand ready to engage with Parliament’s Standing Committee on Finance in order to set the record straight once and for all.
“We have always maintained that the misrepresentations regarding our relationship with the PIC are politically driven. We will approach Parliament for an urgent meeting. We will also continue our efforts to engage with the PIC.”
Survé also restated that there was still some confusion in the market, perpetuated by misleading media reports, as to his and/or Sekunjalo Investment Holding’s position in AYO. He reaffirmed that he has never been a director of the company, is not its chairman and has never held a management position. SIH is an in-direct investor in AYO, through African Equity Empowerment Investments (AEEI), in which SIH holds a stake. The continuous reference to AYO being his, is, “false and reckless and needs to cease,” he said. Further, Survé confirmed, again, that the PIC had also never lent nor invested money in Sekunjalo, another urban myth that continues to be publicized.
Survé also reiterated that since inception, Sekunjalo Investment Holdings and the companies in which it invests, have made an immense contribution to the fundamental transformation of the South African economy including job creation, poverty alleviation and black economic empowerment.
“We are immensely proud of our contribution towards the political and economic transformation of South Africa. Notwithstanding the immense havoc wreaked by the Covid-19 pandemic on our people, we remain resolute in our mission to protect jobs and will intensify our contribution towards the rebuilding of the economy. We will not be deterred from this critical task,” said Survé.
Disclaimer - The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the BEE CHAMBER