SOUTH AFRICA – Africa’s largest fund manager, Public Investment Corporation (PIC), has rallied behind its Chief Executive Daniel Matjila following reports of misappropriation of funds.
He was also accused of illegally raising the salaries of some executives.
PIC, South Africa’s national pension fund manager, is the continent’s largest fund manager with nearly 2 trillion rand ($150 billion) of civil servants’ pensions under its management. It holds huge stakes in blue-chip companies such as miner Anglo American, lender Barclays Africa, and grocer retailer Shoprite.
Business Day reported on Friday that Matjila had been accused in a letter sent to PIC’s board of using funds reserved for corporate social investment to bankroll a business of someone close to him and of irregularly raising salaries of PIC executives, Reuters revealed.
Matjila, however, told Reuters that the report was a ploy to get him suspended. “They are trying to find a reason to suspend or fire me,” he said.
The PIC held a board meeting on Friday where Matjila made representations responding to the allegations against him. “Following the meeting, the Board expressed its confidence in the ability and integrity of the CEO, Dr Daniel Matjila, management and staff of the PIC,” the fund said in a statement.
“The Board also noted media allegations prior to the meeting about its intention to remove the CEO. The Board wishes to reiterate that it rejects these allegations with the contempt they deserve.”