NBFIRA reaffirms CMB statutory management

  • CMB assets remain frozen


The legal tussle between Botswana Public Officers Pension Fund (BPOPF) and one of its fund managers, Capital Management Botswana (CMB), has resulted in the fund manager being brought under statutory management and its assets being frozen.

On 30 January 2018, the Non-Bank Financial Institutions Regulatory Authority (NBFIRA) appointed Peter Collins as Statutory Manager of Capital Management Botswana (Pty) Ltd.

Collins assumed the role of Statutory Manager immediately and CMB bank accounts were frozen with immediate effect.

An urgent application to confirm Collins’ appointment in accordance with Section 46(6) of the Securities Act 2014 was thereafter filed with the High Court and subsequently set down for hearing before Justice Letsididi on 5 February 2018 at the Lobatse High Court.

According to NBFIRA’s statement issued last week, on 1 February 2018, CMB – without notice to either NBFIRA or Collins, and without regard to the proceedings scheduled before Justice Letsididi – moved an urgent application before his Justice Motumise.

They obtained an order nullifying Collins’ appointment and thereby allowing release of the funds that had been frozen in terms of the Statutory Management appointment.

NBFIRA immediately filed an urgent application on 2 February 2018 to rescind the order of Justice Motumise, which succeeded. The effect of this order re-instates Collins and allows the unfrozen funds to be frozen again.

Trouble started when CMB was fingered for violations of the agreement with BPOPF and the BPOPF board met in November 2017 to confirm the termination of CMB for alleged numerous violations of the partnership agreement in Botswana Opportunities Partnership (BOP) – a private equity fund set up by the two parties. Although they have been notified about the termination, CMB has failed to return BPOPF’s assets as instructed.

BPOPF is battling to recover P477 million in assets and cash from CMB following the termination of a private equity investment contract between the two parties.