Court Cases



Court Cases

On this page you will find documents relating to Oakbay Investments’ affidavit in response to the application by Pravin Gordhan, the Minister of Finance.

The Minister’s superfluous application is riddled with factual and legal errors. The Minister’s reliance on the list of 72 purported “suspicious transaction reports” is misplaced and the Minister’s application is supported by a flawed analysis and a faulty factual record.

Oakbay has never suggested that the Minister is required to intervene in the bank-customer relationship. There is no contested legal issue here and there is never any reason for the Minister to bring this application.

The timing of the Minister’s application supports the Oakbay Group’s suspicions that the application is politically motivated and is part of the Minister’s ongoing plan to diminish the Oakbay Group and the Gupta family and to damage their hard-earned South African business.

For these reasons, amongst others, the Court should therefore decline to grant the relief sought by the Minister and dismiss the Minister’s application.

Press Releases

OAKBAY COMMENTS ON THE REAL REASONS FOR FINANCE MINISTER’S COURT ACTION

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, March 29 2017 – Ronica Ragavan, Acting CEO of Oakbay Investments, comments on today’s events in Court:  

“The ulterior motives of the Finance Minister have been made very clear in Court today. He has used an irrelevant and fundamentally flawed list of transactions to further his warfare against Oakbay and its shareholders. Even worse, he has used both his office and the resources of the State to pursue this.

“The reason the Minister is using Oakbay as a pawn for his own political purposes is a mystery to us. Perhaps it is to try and protect the banking sector from future scrutiny into its conduct. Either way, it is reckless and inappropriate.  

“We look forward to the judgement and are confident that common sense will prevail.”  

 

-ENDS-

 

Contact: corpcomm@oakbay.co.za

OAKBAY RESPONDS FOR CALLS TO WITHDRAW FROM GORDHAN APPLICATION HEARING

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, March 29, 2017 – Ronica Ragavan, Acting CEO of Oakbay Investments, responds to calls from Jeremy Gauntlett, the Finance Minister’s lawyer, for Oakbay to withdraw from the application hearing:

 

“Oakbay Investments has suffered unjustified and severe reputational damage as a result of the Minister’s application. His inclusion of the FIC report and Deputy Minister Jonas’ affidavit, which were both struck off yesterday, clearly demonstrate the motives that sit behind the application.

“We will continue to argue in court for this unnecessary application, which is a waste of taxpayers’ money and the court’s time, to be dismissed. As the architect of the application and the campaign to smear Oakbay, if anyone is to withdraw it should be the Minister.”  

 

-ENDS-

 

Contact: corpcomm@oakbay.co.za

COURT RULES FIC REPORT AND JONAS AFFIDAVIT IRRELEVANT TO GORDHAN APPLICATION

OAKBAY CALLS AGAIN FOR INFORMATION ON 72 TRANSACTIONS

 

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, March 28, 2017 – Ronica Ragavan, Acting CEO of Oakbay Investments, responds to today’s events in Court:

 

“We are delighted that the FIC report, Deputy Minister Jonas’s affidavit and any reference to either of them have been struck from the Finance Minister’s application. As the Court agreed, the report and the Jonas affidavit are irrelevant to the application. They serve no purpose but to further the Minister’s own political agenda and to tarnish the Group’s image.

 

“For months we have said the list of 72 transactions has been a tool to smear our name and drive unsubstantiated negative media coverage of our business and our shareholders. When attached to a totally unnecessary application, with no contested legal issue, it becomes clear what the Finance Minister is up to.

 

“Now we want the information we need to prove our innocence. We call on the Finance Minister, the banks, the FIC and anyone with the power and authority to release the full details of the 72 transactions so that we can identify them. The truth will come out in the end and today is just the start.”

 

-ENDS-

 

Contact: corpcomm@oakbay.co.za

Oakbay Investments responds to Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan’s affidavit

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, January 30, 2017/APO/ -- Oakbay Investments (OakbayInvestments.co.za) today responded to the affidavit filed by South Africa’s Finance Minister, Pravin Gordhan.

A spokesperson for Oakbay Investments said:

“Today's affidavit is a case of reverse victim syndrome. The applicant proactively came after us and smeared our name with a flawed list of transactions - that he used his unique executive power to obtain - and then questions the manner of our response to him. All of this changes nothing. Our bank accounts remain closed and no evidence exists to prove why that is the case. We look forward to clearing our name in Court.”

On January 20, 2017, Oakbay Investments submitted an affidavit in response to Minster Gordhan’s application where he sought a declaration from the court to confirm he has no legal responsibility to intervene in the matter of the closure of Oakbay’s bank accounts by South Africa’s four biggest banks: Absa, Nedbank, Standard Bank and FNB.

In Oakbay’s responding affidavit it said that the Minister’s superfluous application is riddled with factual and legal errors. Furthermore, the company said that the Minister’s reliance on the list of 72 purported “suspicious transaction reports” is misplaced and the Minister’s application is supported by a flawed analysis and a faulty factual record.

Oakbay has never suggested that the Minister is required to intervene in the bank-customer relationship. There is no contested legal issue here and there is never any reason for the Minister to bring this application.

This application is an abuse of court and an effort to involve the independent judiciary to settle political scores. The Court should therefore decline to grant the relief sought by the Minister and dismiss the Minister’s application with costs.

-ENDS-

Oakbay Investments calls on the High Court to dismiss Pravin Gordhan’s “bizarre” application

Independent report concludes there is not enough information on 72 “suspicious transaction reports” available to identify them in the books and records of Oakbay Group

 

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, January 20, 2017 – Van der Merwe & Associates, lawyers for Oakbay Investments, submitted an affidavit to the High Court in Pretoria in response to the application by Pravin Gordhan, the Minister of Finance.

 

Highlights of the Oakbay Investments affidavit:

 
  • The Minister’s superfluous application is riddled with factual and legal errors. The Minister’s reliance on the list of 72 purported “suspicious transaction reports” is misplaced and the Minister’s application is supported by a flawed analysis and a faulty factual record
 
  • Oakbay has never suggested that the Minister is required to intervene in the bank-customer relationship. There is no contested legal issue here and there is never any reason for the Minister to bring this application
 
  • The Minister could simply have declined to do anything in the exercise of his legal discretion. Instead, he has asked the court to confirm that he does not have to do anything. The Minister has essentially asked the court to insert itself into the functioning of the executive branch. It would be bizarre if every empowered government official receiving a request for assistance or counsel, races to Court to seek a declaration that he/she does not have to act on the request
 
  • If the Court were to countenance the Minister’s application for guidance, it would open the floodgates for other weak-kneed political officials who are too scared to take positions on sensitive political and policy matters and would make the judiciary a maker of political judgements. This application is an abuse of court and an effort to involve the independent judiciary to settle political scores
 
  • Regarding the 72 “suspicious transaction reports” allegedly reported to the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) and highlighted in the certificate provided to the Minister by the FIC:
 
  • Oakbay has made every attempt and pursued every avenue open to it, to gain the information it needs to prove that each and every transaction is legitimate and above board
 
  • Nardello & Co, an international investigative firm, was engaged to review the 72 transactions. Nardello’s report concludes that there is not enough information about the 72 suspicious transaction reports to identify them in the books and records of Oakbay Group or the personal bank accounts of members of the Gupta family
 
  • Two-thirds of the allegedly suspicious transactions occurred after the time when the banks had already decided to terminate their relationship with Oakbay
 
  • The FIC’s release of this information to the Minister was unlawful in itself
 
  • The Court should therefore decline to grant the relief sought by the Minister and dismiss the Minister’s application with costs
 
  • In January 2016, during a meeting with 60 “captains of industry”, the Minister, according to sources, elaborated on the Gupta family and said that steps must be taken “to clip the wings of this Family” as part of a coordinated campaign orchestrated by the Minister
 
  • Furthermore, the timing of the Minister’s application supports the Oakbay Group’s suspicions that the application is politically motivated and is part of the Minister’s ongoing plan to diminish the Oakbay Group and the Gupta family and to damage their hard-earned South African business
 

-ENDS-

 

For more information, please contact corpcomm@oakbay.co.za

 


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