Saturday, March 6, 2021

G4S renews cautionary announcement

Security Company, G4S Botswana has advised its shareholders to continue exercising caution when dealing in the Company’s securities until a full announcement is made. This follows the renewal of a cautionary announcement initially made in mid March which relate to the granting of an order of the High Court of Botswana against the Botswana Stock Exchange listed company.

G4S Botswana Limited says that the developments, which are still being investigated, may have an effect on the share price of the Company’s securities.

“Accordingly, shareholders are advised to continue exercising caution when dealing in the Company’s securities until a full announcement is made.”

In terms of the Listing Requirements of the Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE), G4S Botswana Limited (the Company) is required to announce through the BSE any circumstances or events that have or are likely to have a material effect on the share price of the Company’s securities.

The company suffered a blow in February when the High Court refused to rescind its December 10, 2014 order attaching 70 percent of its shares under control and supervision of the Registrar and Master of the High Court.

The High Court order was subsequent to an application by former G4S Nigeria Managing Director Percy Raditladi, who is suing the parent company (G4S plc) and six of its subsidiaries for repudiating a December 2011 agreement he had entered with the company.

The agreement entitled Raditladi to remain on the board of G4S Nigeria and receive payment of US$2000 per month pending the lifting of a bail recognizance he entered with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission during his tenure at G4S Nigeria. Some months after Raditladi terminated his contract with G4S Nigeria, G4S plc reneged on its agreement to retain him as a board member pending the lifting the bail personal recognizance.

Raditladi is now suing G4S plc and its subsidiaries for putative breach of the December 2011 agreement. In a bid to effect service on all the seven respondents, Raditladi lodged an ex parte application with the High Court seeking for the shares of G4S to be attached. The attachment order was granted pending finalization of the case on March 23, when the respondents would have been called upon to show cause why the 70 percent shares of the G$S Plc in G4S Botswana should not be attached until the substantive case pertaining to breach of specific performance has been concluded.

In a scathing 61 page judgment, Justice Shakes Busang relied on the provisions of law with respect to the company directors’ duties under the Companies Act which provide that the directors are to exercise their powers in good faith, in the best interest of the company, with the degree of care diligence and required skills in the discharge of their duties, chief of which is the discharge of office honestly, in good faith and in the best interest of the company.

“These are onerous obligations, compliance with which is mandatory. The Act further prescribes offences and penalties that may be imposed for breach of the above provisions,” said Justice Busang.

He castigated G4S for not taking the court in confidence by explaining why the information in the annual reports that Raditladi relied on which are official documents issues in terms of the Companies Act contain information that is different, on important issue of the majority shareholding, from the share certificate and the share register.

“I am unable to understand how G4S would under oath disown the contents of its own annual report. It is hereby ordered that the rule nisi of 10th December shall remain in place and undisturbed pending the return date of the 23rd March. Costs of the application and argument shall be borne by G4S,” said Justice Busang.

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