Hawks drops Net1 investigation: report

Net1 UEPS Technologies subsidiary, Cash Paymaster Services (CPS) is no longer under investigation by the Hawks over a R10 billion tender for the payment of social security grants‚ according to a report by I-Net Bridge.

However, the company continues to be under the watch of the US Department of Justice who is investigating allegations by losing bidder and Absa company, AllPay, of tender manipulation and bribery.

CPS was awarded a R10 billion contract by the SA Social Security Agency (Sassa) in January 2012.

Hawks spokesman Capt Paul Ramaloko told I-Net Bridge that the criminal case against CPS was closed based on the Supreme Court of Appeal’s decision that the contract was not fraudulently awarded.

“The Hawks are currently not investigating this matter‚” he said.

Net1 had announced in December 2012 that the US Department of Justice was investigating whether it had violated provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

The agencies were also to investigate if Net1 had violated federal securities laws in connection with statements made in its SEC filings regarding the Sassa contract.

It also received a letter from the US Securities and Exchange Commission on an investigation initiated against it.

In August 2012, the North Gauteng High Court ruled that the tender process for the Sassa contract was improper, after AllPay voiced its concerns about the process.

At the end of March 2013, Net1 said that a full bench of the South African Supreme Court of Appeal unanimously ruled that the tender process followed by Sassa in awarding a contract to CPS was valid and legal.

In April, AllPay filed leave to appeal with the South African Constitutional Court against the judgment handed down in March.

Last month (30 July), in reporting interim results for the period June 2013, Absa said of AllPay: ”The business continues to be wound down following the loss of the social grant payment contract in early 2012.”

The bank declined to comment any further, noting that it is subject to the Constitutional Court appeal.

“AllPay has appealed the decision of the Supreme Court to uphold the awarding of the social grants contract to another party. This appeal is scheduled to be heard in the Constitutional Court in the second half of the year (September),” Absa said.

More on Net1 and AllPay

Absa closing social grants company AllPay?

Absa’s Allpay heads to the constitutional court

Absa, Net1 battle isn’t over

Net1 wins supreme court case over Absa

Court grants leave to appeal in Sassa case

Net1 set for legal action against AllPay

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Hawks drops Net1 investigation: report