Saturday, May 15, 2021

Hollard disowns Stanbic over client fraud allegations

Hollard Insurance Company of Botswana has thrown Stanbic Bank of Botswana under the bus.

This relates to a case in which the two entities as well as the Non-Bank Financial Institutions Regulatory Authority (NBFIRA) stand accused of fraud by a client – latest papers filed before the High Court show. 

In his replying affidavit to accusations levelled against Hollard by Meepo Mosupiemang, chief risk officer Tebogo Ramsden stated that the majority of the averments made by Mosupiemang are made against and concern Stanbic Bank Botswana not Hollard. 

“I wish to humbly point out to this Honourable Court that it was not the Third Respondent (Hollard) that debited the Applicant’s (Mosupiemang) bank account and that any debits processed against the Applicant’s bank account were processed by Stanbic Bank Botswana Limited (Stanbic),” said Ramsden.

He said the only insurance cover placed with Hollard (then known as Regent Insurance Company of Botswana) and which remained in force and effect was insurance cover placed for the period August 2011 to August 2012.

“Insurance cover for the vehicle was automatically renewed for the period from 8th August 2012 to August 2013 but this cover was cancelled in or about 2012 and the premium was refunded to Stanbic in March 2012,” he said. 

Ramsden said he had no knowledge of the reason of the reason for which Stanbic filed the letter dated 12 December to be precise.”

He added: “I humbly submit that the applicant’s complaint arise out of misinterpretation or a misunderstanding of the contents of the letter.” 

Mosupiemang had alleged that Stanbic had colluded with Hollard to forge some documents in an effort to build a solid defence against him in the main application in which he is tracing at least P30 000 that was debited by the bank without his consent. 

Hollard denied the above allegations and distanced itself from forgery claims.

“The letter was authored by one Mr K Pelekekae who was employed by the Third Respondent and is no longer employed by the Respondent. The letter was requested by Stanbic as part of its defense to the legal proceedings instituted by the Applicant against Stanbic,” said Ramsden.

The letter which was addressed to Hollard by Stanbic states: “As discussed this car was repossessed by the bank in 2014 and was sold to another customer. Now the previous owner wants to claim the insurance premium charged for the period 2013/2014 because we have not given him a copy of the Policy Schedule. We need a cover confirmation letter that we covered the vehicle for the period 18-04-2013 to 17-04-2014.) The Bank need(s) to present the case tomorrow and we will appreciate your prompt response.” 

Hollard states that it had insured Mosupiemang for the period 8th August 2011 to 7th August 2012. The policy was then renewed in 2012 but was then cancelled after Moepiemang had arranged his own insurance cover. 

“On 18th April 2013 the Bank charged him insurance cover for the period 18th April 2013 to 17th April 2014. The letter (authored by Pelekekae) did not state that the Third Respondent had insured the Applicant for the period 18th April 2013 to 17th April 2014. 

The letter unequivocally states that Stanbic Bank had charged Applicant for insurance for the said period of 18th April 2013 to 17th April 2014. I wish to point out that it was not the Third Respondent debited the Applicant’s bank account and that any debits processed against the Applicant’s bank accounts were processed and debited by Stanbic,” said Ramsden.

He said Hollard did not say in the said letter (a reply by Pelekekae to a request by Stanbic) that that it had insured Mosupiemang for that period (April 2013 to April 2014) because, quite simply, that was not true and the insurance company added that it had not insured Mosupiemang’s motor vehicle for that period.

“No funds were received by the Third Respondent for the payment of any premium for this period. In so far as it was understood by the applicant, or any other person, that the letter meant that the Third Respondent had insured the Applicant’s motor vehicle for that period, the Third Respondent informed the First Respondent (NBFIRA) that it was factually incorrect,” he said.

Ramsden states that in so far as Mosupiemang has a complaint that his account was debited for insurance cover for the period April 2013 to April 2014, that complaint should be directed to Stanbic. 

“The Third Respondent did not, and cannot debit the Applicant’s account,” he said. 

He reiterated: “The Third Respondent has kept proper records of the insurance of the Applicant’s motor vehicle. The Applicant’s vehicle was insured by the Third Respondent for the period 8th August 2011 to August 2012. The policy was then automatically renewed for the period 8th August 2012 to August 2013, but this cover was cancelled in or about October 2012 and the premium was refunded to Stanbic Bank in March 2013.”

He also denied that there has been any fraud on the part of Hollard as alleged by Moepiemang.  

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