High court overturns Pension Funds Adjudicator ruling

A high court has dismissed and set aside a Pension Funds Adjudicator’s (PFA) determination that Bokamoso Retirement Fund should pay back money incorrectly deducted from a man’s pension payout.

The adjudicator, Muvhango Lukhaimane, had ordered Bokamoso – which is administered by the Akani Retirement Fund Administrators – to pay back an amount deducted from former Akani employee Ntokozo Maseko’s retirement fund withdrawal benefit in respect of a study loan, and further urged the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) to investigate Akani for unlawful conduct.

However, in overturning the PFA decision, the court agreed with the fund’s calculations and approach to the matter.

The former employee had multiple study loans of which one was dollar denominated.

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When all the amounts owing were reconciled, the fund realised there was a miscalculation.

This was explained to the PFA and they agreed with the version offered by Akani and Bokamoso.

But they later changed in their final determination.

Managing director of Akani Zamani Letjane said: “We welcome the judgment of the high court for exonerating both Akani and Bokamoso and proving – without a shadow of a doubt – that the decisions the Bokamoso board took were in line with the rules of the fund.

“This is not the first time the PFA has been found wanting by the courts. Their contradictory determinations are a cause for concern.”

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