The Limpopo Development Agency will neither confirm nor deny reports that there are plans to acquire the embattled VBS Mutual Bank. It is also not clear if the Limpopo Provincial Government, a shareholder in the Agency, has approached it regarding its plans to save VBS from liquidation.
The African National Congress (ANC) in the province is also denying reports that it has instituted plans to save the bank from liquidation. The ANC in Limpopo says it would like to see VBS Mutual Bank rescued from its dire financial situation. It is, however, denying media reports that it has considered approaching the Limpopo Economic Development Agency (LEDA), a state owned entity, to have it acquire the troubled bank and save it from possible liquidation.
Provincial party spokesperson, Donald Selamolela, says they will wait for all investigations to be finalised before pronouncing on the party’s recommendations. Selamolela says party officials have agreed that the bank needs to be saved from liquidation.
LEDA says it is required to follow instructions from its shareholders, which includes the provincial government. Its overall goal is to ensure economic growth through large industrial projects. Spokesperson Patrick Monkoe, says the government has a right to indicate its interests in the acquisition of any asset.
“As LEDA, we can’t actually agree or deny if the provincial government which is a shareholder of LEDA wants to acquire any asset, whether be it VBS whether it is a commercial bank. That is the decision that rests with them as the shareholder, therefore as LEDA – we have the mandate to execute what the shareholder has given to us.”
Curator Anoosh Rooplal says no one has approached his office regarding any propositions which entail a bail-out plan for the bank. “I have not received any form of proposals so that is not to say we are not open to receiving, we most certainly will be open to receiving any form of proposal.”
Rooplal says they are planning to pursue civil proceedings after R1.5 billion was plundered at the bank. He says the decision by the Johannesburg High Court to issue five provisional sequestration orders against five current and former VBS executives, might assist in securing future capital for the bank to sustain itself.
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