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Final report says African Bank directors failed in duties - source

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Johannesburg - The final report into South Africa’s first bank collapse in 12 years found directors at African Bank Investments failed in their duties to manage and protect the Johannesburg-based lender before its downfall almost two years ago, according to two people who’ve seen a copy of the document.

The report, compiled by advocate John Myburgh and submitted to the central bank in February last year, criticised the bank’s governance and questioned whether directors were suitably qualified to oversee CEO Leon Kirkinis, the people said, asking not to be identified because the report hasn’t been published. No fraud was discovered, they said, without giving details on the report’s recommendations.

At the time of its collapse in August 2014, seven of African Bank Investments’ 11 board members had no banking experience prior to joining the lender, according to biographies listed in the 2013 annual report. Kirkinis co-founded and ran what was then the country’s largest provider of loans not backed by assets from 1999 until he quit on August 6 2014. That was four days before the central bank appointed managers to take over the lender and nurse its viable assets back to health.

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