Former EOH finance chief John King dies amid R1.7bn damages claim

Group has been pursuing a number of former executives through civil proceedings.
EOH is attempting to recover money paid to parties that ‘performed no services whatsoever’. Image: Moneyweb

John King, the former chief financial officer of EOH Holdings who was being sued by the company for R1.7 billion in damages, has died.

King passed away on October 4. It’s understood he died of pneumonia. He was 61.

EOH expressed its condolences to King’s family on his passing.

John King, former CFO of EOH Holdings. Image: TechCentral

TechCentral reported in June that EOH was suing King and other former directors – including former CEO Asher Bohbot – for billions of rand in damages for governance lapses when they led the company.

EOH sued King and Bohbot for R1.7 billion each. It filed the civil claims in the high court in Johannesburg for damages inflicted on the group due to their alleged failure to deal effectively with governance breaches and malfeasance that decimated the IT services group’s share price and valuation, and damaged its reputation.

Specifically, EOH sued Bohbot and King on charges of delinquency, breach of fiduciary duties and breach of contract.

EOH also filed papers against former public sector head Jehan Mackay for R1.5 billion. EOH is suing Mackay for a breach of fiduciary duties as well as for allegedly making payments to third parties for no work done. Mackay’s name featured prominently in evidence presented by law firm ENSafrica at the Zondo Commission of Inquiry into State Capture.

ENSafrica probe

It also issued a summons against Ebrahim Laher, who served as head of EOH International, for an amount R1.6-billion. He faces claims of negligence and mismanagement.

The civil suits flowed from investigative work done by ENSafrica into corruption in the group’s public sector contracts. The civil litigation was brought with the mandate of EOH’s board of directors.

Read: Blacklisting EOH now will punish the wrong people

EOH instructed ENSafrica in 2019 to expand its investigation after TechCentral broke the news in February of that year that Microsoft had terminated its relationship with the local IT services group over a dodgy software licensing contract between EOH unit EOH Mthombo and the South African department of defence.

The news sent EOH’s share price into a tailspin from which it still hasn’t recovered.

The ENSafrica probe subsequently uncovered evidence of widespread wrongdoing at the group.

EOH said in June that it was pursuing its former top executives through civil proceedings to try to recover as much of the money as possible that was “siphoned out of the business and paid to enterprise development partners and third parties that performed no services whatsoever”.

The legal action comes on top of likely criminal proceedings against implicated individuals.

Duncan McLeod is editor of TechCentral, on which this article was first published here.

© 2021 NewsCentral Media

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Is EOH a buy at R8.00?

One less prisoner to feed. Hope EOH goes after his estate too. Sorry for his family, but he should have thought of them before he did what he did.

What happened to “ innocent until proven guilty?”
There is no evidence as far as I can tell that this man benefitted in lifestyle change from EOH’s demise…unlike a Jooste and co who stole, lived the highlife and has still not been prosecuted for his actions!
It would not surprise me if Kings death was not brought on by the stress of EOH’s,s collapse – perhaps he was a man on conscience after all. But definitely innocent until proven otherwise.

I hear you Rule9. Personal experience having sold a business to EOH however, is that EOH is rotten to the core. Them suing King puts me on King’s side, because they have sued all our own directors as an obvious tactic to literally just get out of contractual commitments. EOH is so large that they have the ability to ignore the “little guy”, permanently altering the course of our families’ lives for the worse… I wish we had never, ever dealt with EOH, and we’re not the only “little guy” that wishes this.

Guilty or not guilty, no claim will be successful against a deceased person.

Time to go after the whole rotten bunch. Hopefully the previous Steinhoff crew and some politicians to follow

@Ergo: You are right but I disagree about “some” politicians. It should read “many, many”.

This is all well and good. But what has happened to the criminal charges promised by the new company leadership? After all, this was theft on a grand scale.

All will die a slow death and go away.

Apologies for the rather bad pun.

End of comments.

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