Wednesday, July 28, 2021

…..Another blow for Carter as BPOPF sends him packing

The newly constituted board of the Botswana Public Officers Pension Fund (BPOPF) has booted out the fund’s long serving chairperson, Carter Morupisi.

Morupisi, who is also the Permanent Secretary to the President (PSP), was retained as the chairperson of the board of trustees of the country’s multi billion pension fund in 2015 despite his accession to the highest office in the land. Traditionally the post had been held by director of the Department Public Service Management (DPSM) ÔÇô a post that Morupisi held before he was promoted to become PSP.

Over the years Morupisi has had a tempestuous relationship with public sector union representatives in the BPOPF board, who have always viewed his position as board Chairman with suspicion. At the time, Union representatives blamed Morupisi when top managers at BPOPF were dismissed under questionable circumstances amid allegations that they were against intrusion by government and ruling party functionaries in the Fund’s operations.

Meanwhile the new BPOPF board of trustees has elected the Secretary General of BOFEPUSU, Tobokani Rari as its chairperson.

The new board is understood to have met on Wednesday where a decision to rope in Rari, who has been a board member was taken. Rari was appointed BPOPF Trustee on 12th March 2015 and he is an educator.

The decision to let Morupisi go comes at a time when the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime (DCEC) is said to be investigating the PSP’s relationship with one of the local asset – Capital Management Botswana (CMB). It is understood that a few months ago the BPOPF resolved to report Morupisi to the DCEC following allegations that he has a “beneficial interest in CMB through CEO Okaile Rapula.

Relations have since soured between BPOPF and CMB after the former terminated the contract and asked for its money back.

In December 2017, Morupisi denied having any interest in CMB and said he was open to a public enquiry into his financials to clear his name.

Still in 2017, BPOPF terminated CMB mandate after investigations revealed that the fund manager flouted agreed investments policies and guidelines.

The contract was terminated on October 30, 2017 with an order for the fund manager to return P477 million in assets, but sources within the industry revealed by late 2017 that CMB has not complied with BPOPF’s demands. The two are currently battling it out in courts of law over the issue and others related to it.

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