Fresh evidence stirs family feud

Bame Piet
TWIST IN THE TALE: Pilane (in shades) with his lawyer

Court documents in the ongoing case between President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi’s relatives Joseph Pilane, Kelebogile Monnaatshipi, and Phadi Mmutle show that the family established G&M Building Services (PTY) Ltd in May 2001, before it was re-registered in 2021.

Pilane is suing G&M Building Services, Kelebogile Monnatshipi, Tswela Khumo Ventures, and Huashi Li for P17.5 million as part of his shares for the P550 million Good Hope Sub-District Council Water Supply project.

In their joint affidavit, the defendants deny that Huashi Li was a shareholder in G&M Building Services but only signed some documents in Tiayuan Construction Group Limited, Pre-Con Construction PTY Limited, and G&M Building Services (GBS).

“Such signing cannot have been confirmation of any statement that the Huashi Li is a shareholder in GBS, or validation of any alleged statement made by him”.

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Further, they deny that Pilane was a shareholder in GBS adding that he has failed to show who he got the shares from, and how much he paid for them, or how he got them.
“Even on the basis of the share certificates that have been attached, it cannot be said that Pilane was shareholder of GBS. The said share certificates do not appear to be genuine documents as they were allegedly given out on 18th February 2021, yet are stamped 28th February 2019; He has failed to show he was ever on the share register and was unlawfully removed,” reads the affidavit in part.

They say Pilane is not clear on whether his shares amount to 20 or 40 percent.

The defendants say the fact that his name appeared as shareholder at time of re-registration does not take away the fact that he never acquired shareholding in GBS.

They also argue that the fact that Pilane participated in preparation for some tender documents did not mean that he was somehow paying for the shares as he claims, stating that he never acquired any shares from either of the defendants.

“The Plaintiff was at the material time employed by Pre-Con Construction (PTY) Ltd. Whatever assistance he may have rendered was not as him making payment for any shareholding,” the affidavit further reads.

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The defendants also deny allegations that Huashi Li ordered Pilane to resign or that he made any orders to him. “What the Plaintiff states is a figment of his imagination, to try to appear the victim, which is most unfortunate and untenable”.

The defendants argue that Pilane voluntarily resigned from GBS and was never forced by anyone, but only reversed the resignation when the matter was before the court.

They further deny that Pilane’s shares were transferred to Tswela Khumo Ventures saying that the defendants got their shares from different parties.

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They say Pilane cannot be entitled to any amount of profit that is yet to be realized. “Profit can only be claimed once they have been realized and not on speculative basis”.

Further, they argue that there is no basis for the defendants to be jointly or severally liable for the amount claimed.

Meanwhile, Pilane confirmed that the company was re-registered in August 2021 with shareholders being Kgannyeng (40%), Monnatshipi (20%) and Pilane (40%).

He said he was pressurized to resign at a meeting held at Phakalane Golf Estates in May 2021 after GBS tendered for the Goodhope water supply scheme in joint venture with Tianyuan Construction. He said the company submitted as its directors Kgannyeng, Monnatshipi, and Pilane.

He said he was surprised to discover during an online search on CIPA website on May 21st, 2021 that Monnatshipi was an 80 percent shareholder, whilst Tswela Khumo ventures was a 20 percent shareholder of GBS.

He argues that the purported reconstitution of GBS shareholding unlawfully affected his 40 percent shareholding hence the court matter.

He said the company had stopped paying him the P45,000.00 per month directors fee
He further argued that although Huashi Li is neither listed as shareholder nor director of GBS, he is nevertheless in charge of the company and refuses to account, even to speak to him.

Initially Pilane had wanted the company to be liquidated before settling for a P17.5 million compensation.

Huashi Li said they had a business relationship that was simply to the extent of collaborating on projects between the parties and nothing beyond that.

The matter resumes before Justice Michael Leburu next month.

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