BUSINESS NEWS - The country’s second-biggest insurer, Old Mutual, said it had fired suspended CEO Peter Moyo, citing a conflict of interest with an investment firm he founded.
In a Tuesday statement, the insurer said it had terminated Moyo’s contract due to a “material breakdown in trust and confidence”.
Moyo was suspended by the board last month over concerns about how a conflict of interest had been managed in relation to his investments in the NMT group of companies.
While conflicting interest was declared upon his employment and was governed by a specific protocol to regulate the conflict of interest, Old Mutual said its board has not been provided with an “acceptable explanation” for the declaration of ordinary dividends by NMT Capital during 2018 in the amount of R115 million, which benefited Moyo R30.6 million.
This was in breach of Old Mutual’s rights as a preference shareholder.
“These issues came to the attention of a sub-committee of independent directors, the Related Party Transaction Committee (RPTC) during February 2019. The RPTC, in turn, reported to the OML Corporate Governance and Nomination Committee (NomCom) in March 2019. This was followed by various engagements with Mr Moyo personally.
“The board held two meetings during May 2019 to consider these matters and on 23 May 2019 it came to the conclusion that there was a material breakdown in trust and confidence in Mr Moyo,” said the insurer in a statement.
Iain Williamson will continue to act as the insurer’s CEO until a permanent CEO is appointed.
Old Mutual’s chairperson, Trevor Manuel, said: “There is a duty on directors of all institutions to be vigilant regarding the management of conflicts of interest. The importance of this duty has been highlighted by a number of recent corporate governance breakdowns within both the private and public sector.”