Monday, September 20, 2021

NBFIRA, CBM case head to Court Of Appeal

The Non Banking Financial Institutions Regulatory Authority (NBFIRA) has said that it will appeal the judgment of a case in which it wanted to appoint statutory manager for embattled Capital Management Botswana (CMB).

“This is not about CMB, but rather, the true position of the law on such matters”, said NBFIRA CEO Oaitse Ramasedi on Friday.

The decision to appeal follows a court judgment on Tuesday in which High Court in the capital Gaborone reversed the appointment by NBFIRA of Peter Collins as statutory manager for CMB.

About a month ago, NBFIRA appointed Peter Collins as CMB statutory manager, a move that was opposed by the company directors through their lawyers, Kanjabanga and Associates. The move by NBFIRA to appoint the statutory manager is said to have been motivated by insurance outfit, Bona Life. CMB has a controlling stake in Bona Life.

Delivering his judgment this week, Justice Omphemetse Motumise said that the authority (NBFIRA) failed to back its action against CMB with evidence thus the need to reverse the appointment of Peter Collins as statutory manager.

Justice Motumise said that the NBFIRA decision was drastic, with adverse and far reaching implications for the embattled asset management firm ÔÇô CMB.

“The absence of the board resolution, consenting to, or ratifying the application is fatal,” Motumise said.

Justice Motumise said he is not satisfied or convinced that a reasonable regulator, acting rationally, would consider it proper to delegate its regulatory and oversight powers and functions to the very entities it is by law required to regulate. Worst still an entity that is desperately conflicted and self-interested concerning the subject matter of the delegation.

When seeking the statutory management, NBFIRA had said that the move is in a quest to safeguard interests of CMB clients and also ensure sustained stability in the financial sector.

In his judgement, Justice Motumise said that there is no evidence that the financial sector has been affected by the non submission of audited accounts by CMB.

Following the Tuesday loss, Ramasedi said that the regulator has since decided to appeal against Motumise’s judgement.

“We have thought long and hard about the implications of the judgment as it stands and decided that we need to urgently approach the Court of Appeal and have our reading of the financial services laws as regards related issues confirmed or corrected by the Court of Appeal”, Ramasedi told Sunday Standard late Friday.

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