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AYO served summons to pay back R4.3bn to PIC

May 31 2019 20:34
Lameez Omarjee and Khulekani Magubane, Fin24

AYO Technology Solutions intends to oppose a court application by the Public Investment Corporation and the Government Employees Pension Fund to have the company pay back R4.3bn with interest.

According to a shareholder notice issued by AYO on Friday, the company received a summons which seeks the courts to set aside a subscription agreement entered into by the PIC with AYO and to have it declared unlawful. Further, AYO should be ordered to pay back the R4.3bn the PIC invested, including 10.25% interest accrued from December 22, 2017 to the date of final payment.

"AYO has instructed its attorneys to oppose the action and is confident of its position," said the technology company, which is linked to the Sekunjalo Group chaired and founded by Iqbal Survé.

This comes amid a commission of inquiry investigating allegations of wrongdoing at the PIC, which manages R2.2trn in investments on behalf of public servants.

The PIC invested R4.3bn in the ICT company when it listed in late 2017. But there have been allegations that AYO misrepresented its value, Fin24 reported previously.

On Thursday AYO had announced intentions to sue the PIC over the damage done to its reputation given the comments made by PIC officials about the investment in the public domain. "The regrettable comments made by PIC chairman, Mr Mondli Gungubele, and various other officials of the PIC that are now permeating the public domain, have severely damaged the reputation of AYO. In so doing, the PIC has prejudiced the business of AYO, and its own investment into the company," AYO said in its statement.

"AYO urges the PIC to use due process to put its case to the test and not try the company through the media and public forums. AYO welcomes the opportunity to defend itself and remains confident the outcome would be in AYO’s favour," the statement read.

In March, the Pretoria High Court set aside an order by the Companies and Intellectual Properties Commission (CIPC) for the PIC to recover the R4.3bn from AYO. CIPC had issued a compliance notice to the PIC to recover the monies, including interest, Fin24 reported previously.

pic  |  ayo  |  lawsuit  |  pic commission of inquiry
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