The Reserve Bank says the investment group vying for the assets of VBS Mutual Bank would need to acquire a banking licence before taking over the collapsed lender.
In a statement released on Thursday evening, the central bank said it was aware of assertions by Investment Group Africapacity that it intended to buy the scandal-hit VBS.
"Although Africapacity has written to the SARB and the Minister of Finance stating its intention to buy VBS, it has not formally applied for a banking licence," the SA Reserve Bank said in a statement.
It further stated that should the company wish to acquire the assets of VBS, "it would need to comply with the requirements of the Mutual Banks Act 124 of 1993."
VBS was placed under liquidation on November 13, 2018 and its banking activities and licence suspended, amid a liquidity crisis.
The extent of the bank’s financial crisis was exposed in a report titled The Great Bank Heist‚ which was commissioned by the SARB. The report detailed how nearly R2bn was looted, in a scheme said to have benefited individuals and entities related to the bank’s executives‚ including its largest shareholder‚ Vele Investments.
Some of the municipalities from the North West, Limpopo and Gauteng deposited close to R1.6bn in VBS, in contravention of the Municipal Finance Management Act and municipal investment regulations.