“The FF Plus will, following a reply to a question in parliament by the minister of Public Enterprises, write a letter to every entity which had extended credit to Transnet for their infrastructure development program, to inform them of the R80 billion claim against Transnet and the government. The party will also inform the three international credit rating agencies, i.e. Moody’s, Standard & Poor and Fitch that Transnet pensioners have instituted a class action against Transnet and the government,” Adv. Anton Alberts, the FF Plus’ parliamentary spokesperson on Public Enterprises says.
“Although the types of loans which these organisations have extended to Transnet are not subject to the Credit Act because the loans were granted to state organs, the institutions would have to seriously consider the possibility that they are taking unnecessary risks in the light of the pending court case. In addition, the fact that they are now aware of the expenditures together with the pending court case, will force the credit rating agencies to reconsider Transnet and the government’s credit status,” is the opinion of Adv. Alberts.
The FF Plus believes that the government and Transnet’s actions to continue with the signing of loan agreements, while Transnet pensioners are suffering tremendously due to their poor pension benefits which are not being corrected by the entity, is reckless. Transnet pensioners, with the assistance of the FF Plus, were forced to take legal steps against Transnet and the government. During this process, the large-scale plundering of the pension funds was discovered.
“Should Transnet continue with the expansion program, Transnet should do the honourable thing and supplement the pension funds or face a destructive court order. The first part of the court case, i.e. the certification of the pensioners to act as a class, will be heared shortly. Should the pensioners succeed with this application, Transnet will not be allowed to obtain any more loans due to the fact that the claim has tentatively been established and is therefore justiciable. There will therefore be a prima facie case which could be won by the pensioners.
“This fact has been acknowledged by the minister of public enterprises himself in a response to a question of the FF Plus in Parliament – that Transnet’s ability to acquire debt will be extremely weakened if the first application for a class action is granted by the court.
“The FF Plus is at present also taking steps to inform the Auditor General (AG) about the Transnet pensioner’s court case against Transnet and the government. The party will be asking the AG whether Transnet and/or the government had revealed the pensioner’s case to him for his consideration. The party will furthermore enquire of the AG whether, in the case where loans had been acquired, the Financial Management Act had been adhered to,” Adv. Alberts says.
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