Cipro not told of Yengeni convictions
Cape Town - Former ANC chief whip Tony Yengeni was not listed on the register of disqualified directors as the Registrar of Companies was not provided with the relevant information, Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies said on Wednesday.
Yengeni resigned the directorships he held in six companies on November 4, after the Democratic Alliance laid charges against him for serving as a director of the companies, because by law his jail sentence for fraud precluded him from doing so.
Section 218 of the Companies Act disqualifies anybody jailed for theft, fraud, forgery or perjury from being a company director, unless the High Court sets aside the disqualification.
In written reply to a parliamentary question on Wednesday, Davies said, according to the Companies and Intellectual Property Registration Office (Cipro), section 219 of the Companies Act required the Registrar of the Court to provide the Registrar of Companies with copies of court orders and convictions.
This was then used to update the register of disqualified directors.
"Mr Yengeni was not listed on the register of disqualified directors as the Registrar of Companies was not provided with the relevant information," he said.
No action taken
The Registrar of Companies would continue to work with the Registrar of the Court to develop and maintain a system that would facilitate the submission of such information to speedily and appropriately allow for listing the necessary individuals on the register.
The legislation gave companies capacity to appoint their own directors and register them with Cipro for record keeping.
According to Cipro, no action had been taken against any of the Cipro agents at this stage, as the processes of lodging the relevant CM29 form (details of directors), were met at the time, Davies said.
After he resigned the directorships on November 4, Yengeni instructed his attorneys to prepare an application seeking authority from the High Court for him to hold the office of director.
Responding in a statement later on Wednesday, DA spokesperson Tim Harris said Davies's reply appeared to absolve Cipro, but it now shone the spotlight squarely on the justice department.
He called on Justice Minister Jeff Radebe to explain why his department had apparently failed to fulfil its legal duty, thereby allowing Yengeni to illegally hold directorships in several companies for the past five years.