It has been reported today by Die Burger (www.dieburger.com) that the storm over the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries’ suspect R800m tender – subsequently withdrawn due to irregularities – has reached the JSE, which has been asked to investigate possible insider trading.
The share price of Sekunjalo Investments shot up from 40c to 79c per share shortly before the tender announcement. The price dropped significantly after Smit Amandla Marine started litigation in December 2011 to stop the awarding of the contract to Sekunjalo. The DA's Pieter van Dalen said the fact that Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson officially declared that Sekunjalo was 'an innocent party' during a media briefing on 21 March 2012 was suspect in itself. The party referred the matter to the JSE, which in turn indicated that the investigation would be referred to the relevant directorate if any abuse was found. Sekunjalo chief executive, Khalid Abdulla, denied any irregularities and asked for proof. The spike in his company's share price was due to market forces, he said.