SA safety authorities to take over 3.4 billion Optimum Coal Mine

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) has approached the court to seek permission to sell the multi-billion Optimum Coal Mine.

On Friday, 01 July 2022 the government agency filed a forfeiture application for the multi-billion Optimum Coal Mine in the amount of over R3.4 billion. This is after the recommendation by the State Capture Commission that the NPA act on the acquisition of Optimum Coal.

If the application by the NPA is successful, the shares owned by Tegeta Exploration & Resources (Pty) Ltd will be forfeited to the state on the grounds of having been acquired through proceeds of crime. The High Court of South Africa, Gauteng Division handed over a preservation order in favor of the NPA on 23 March 2022.

The ANP presented court papers that the underlying claim to the Templar stake preserved are funds that were advanced by the Gupta family Dubai Company, Griffin Line Trading LLC, a company nominally controlled by Ajay Gupta’s son, Kamal Singhala.

Daniel McGowan, the owner of Templar, has himself stated under oath that the funds advanced by Griffin Line derived from money stolen from the South African government and laundered via Singhala on behalf of his father and wider family members.

Deputy National Director of Public Prosecutions Adv Ouma Rabaji-Rasethaba, responsible for asset forfeiture and the deponent of the papers, said that this is one of the many ways the NPA seeks to recoup proceeds of state capture as recommended in the Zondo Commission Report on State Capture.

The NPA said it was confident in the forfeiture application papers filed yesterday and remained committed to ensuring that the recommendations of the Commission are prioritised.

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