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Old Mutual wins case against CEO who demanded reinstatement

‘It provides legal clarity on corporate governance and board stewardship….’
Image: Moneyweb

A South African court ruled that Old Mutual Ltd. doesn’t have to give fired CEO Peter Moyo his job back, clearing the way for the insurer to find a replacement. The stock rose.

The High Court in Johannesburg on Tuesday upheld an appeal by the 175-year-old insurer against a judgment delivered in July last year to temporarily reinstate the CEO.

“It confirms that Old Mutual acted properly,” spokeswoman Tabby Tsengiwe said at the court. “Importantly it also provides legal clarity on corporate governance and board stewardship, including the relationship between a board and its executive. Old Mutual is committed to strengthening governance and the management of conflicts of interest.”

Moyo told reporters outside the courthouse that there is a “very good chance” he will seek to overturn the decision through the Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein. His team will first need to study the judgment.

The spat first spilled into the open in May when Old Mutual suspended Moyo, citing a “material breakdown in trust and confidence” over an alleged conflict of interest. Moyo has denied any wrongdoing and fired back with counter-accusations against the firm over conflicts involving Chairman Trevor Manuel, which both he and the company denied.

Old Mutual had prevented Moyo from gaining access to his office following his initial court victory. It issued another notice terminating his employment in August, paying out six months of his salary.

Old Mutual’s shares jumped as much as 5.6%, the most since November 2018. That helped pare losses since May to less than 10%, the second-worst performer on the five-member FTSE/JSE Africa Life Assurance Index. The stock hit a record low on Sept. 3.

The case comes as Old Mutual struggles to grow sales and operating earnings amid tepid capital markets, a moribund South African economy and the worst crisis in Zimbabwe in 10 years.

© 2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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Is this farce still going on?

Let him go back to Zimbabwe and earn Z$1000 per month…

Maybe a job at Prasa for him…they also do nothing wrong…

Hopefully Old Mutual sues him now for millions for the reputational, and share price damage that he caused.

This culture of entitlement needs to end, or this country will just be another African s…hole as Trump suggested…

Old Mutual are hardly blameless in all this. Moyo was a known entity to them, having worked there before and they seem to have been really ham-fisted in their dealing with the issues right from the get-go. Anyway, once he is gone they can go back to what they are good at which is reducing share holder value.

That last sentence….Hahahah!!! Winner.

The chairman was instrumental in the process that enabled the perversion the law through a process called BEE codes. Now his own actions have come to haunt him. He has the opportunity to reap what he sowed, and he does this in court, at the mercy of the same legal process that was corrupted by him.

This is inaccurate. Moyo is classed as white for the purposes of BEE codes as he is a foreigner. The chairman’s arrogance though has something to do with how messy this boardroom squabble has become.

‘Moyo is classed as white for the purposes of BEE codes as he is a foreigner.’

LOL, no wonder bee is a disaster.

So, if you are right, what is the root cause of the palace-revolution then? This issue began when Moyo did not repay the loan from Old Mutual.

He must be patient – The Eskom job will become available within the next 3 months..

Not long, and he is going to pull the race card…Unless he has already?

I await Manuel’s fate it takes 2 to tango….

Why is the judge suddenly nameless? The recused one was named all the time…

It was a bench of judges, not a single judge. And the judgement, including the names of the judges on the bench, is a publicly available document.

Peter Moyo was a like a little kid a few months ago punching the air when he had a ruling made in his favour.Did he not realise that the battle was far from won and he now faces a long uphill battle of appeals to claw back some respectability(and cash).He looks like he belongs in an SOE ,and is far from the finished article.I suspect that dear Trevor was behind his appointment and the sooner he jumps ship,the better.Much like Maria was a complete a waste of shareholders money at ABSA,Manuel has largely been the same at OM,and corporates need to wake up and get rid of these parasites

End of comments.

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