The Venda Building Society Mutual Bank (VBS) has hit back at a Sunday Times report that revealed a plan by the cash-strapped Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa) to invest R1-billion with the bank.
VBS made headlines in 2016 after it lent President Jacob Zuma R7.8-million to “pay back the money” in the Nkandla scandal.
In a statement released on Wednesday‚ the bank slammed the Sunday Times report as “riddled with false assumptions and inaccuracies”.
The newspaper report showed that senior finance department officials in Prasa were under pressure to make the first payment of R500-million to the bank as early as Friday‚ with no agreement in place.
“The article makes blatant implication of impropriety on the part of VBS‚ regarding ongoing engagements with PRASA on a deposit facility‚” a VBS statement reads.
VBS then outlines its compliance with National Treasury and Public Finance Management Act regulations and confirms it is registered under the Banks Act.
“This registration qualifies VBS to take deposits and investments with entities regulated by the PFMA‚ which includes among others‚ Prasa.”
This is despite the Sunday Times quoting an internal memo‚ drafted by the acting Prasa CFO Yvonne Page‚ which states that VBS does not meet Prasa’s own regulations for investment entities.