Reportback on the recent high court ruling on the rights of Randgold minority shareholders whose shares are registered in the names of nominee companies
On 15 September, North Gauteng High Court Judge Pierre Rabie finally, after 10 months of deliberation, handed down his judgment on a technical side-issue raised by Investec in a case now known as the Randgold minorities vs. Investec.
The “main” case was introduced into court in 2011. While Investec has categorically stated ad nauseam that the main case bought by the minorities has “no merit whatsoever”, Investec appears set on avoiding a court being given the opportunity to make such a determination.
The minorities are suing Investec, a fellow shareholder in Randgold & Exploration, for oppressive conduct and are demanding that Investec pay them R1,3 billion in damages. In this side-case, which many believe was raised as a stalling tactic, Investec’s lawyers argued that the minorities had no locus standi (right or legal standing) to bring the action because their names do not appear on Randgold’s official share register.