Old Mutual battle ends. . .Peter Moyo loses R250m Old Mutual court challenge

The Chronicle

THE Johannesburg High Court on Monday dismissed Peter Moyo’s case against Old Mutual, which may be a final blow to the former CEO’s hope of getting R250 million from the insurer.

Moyo, born in Zimbabwe, sued the insurer for contractual damages amounting to the total he would have earned for the remainder of his contract, had Old Mutual not fired him in May 2019.

He had served as CEO of the Old Mutual Emerging Markets since June 2017.

The company said he wanted R230 million for contractual damages and another R20 million for the “insults” and impairment of his dignity caused by the statements that the company and its directors made in the media.

Old Mutual filed a court application last week to have Moyo’s case thrown out, with the company contending that there was nothing new in his argument.

Old Mutual said its former CEO was repeating arguments that had already been rejected by the courts before.

Judge Gregory Charles Wright seemingly agreed with the insurer. He found that Moyo failed to produce any evidence to show that Old Mutual wrongfully terminated his contract.

Moyo had brought the damages claim to court because he maintained that Old Mutual fired him unlawfully, even though a full court ruled otherwise in 2020.

While he won a few rounds against the insurer at the beginning of their public legal battle in 2019, higher courts have rejected Moyo’s arguments.

Moyo even took his fight to Bloemfontein after the full bench judgment in 2020. But the Supreme Court of Appeal turned him down too.

The fact that Judge Wright absolved Old Mutual from this case means he believed that no reasonable judge could rule in his favour. That is a requirement for courts to grant an applicant absolution from the instance.

“According to the judgment handed down this morning, the case advanced by Mr Moyo himself is not one which could lead to a finding for him… This means that there is no need for Old Mutual to call any witnesses to testify in opposition to Mr Moyo’s claims, which have been dismissed on the basis of Mr Moyo’s own version,” said Old Mutual in a statement.

The court also found that Old Mutual lawfully terminated Moyo’s contract on notice, as their agreement allowed for that.

“The Court said it agreed with and was bound by similar findings made by a full bench of the High Court in January 2020, which also found Old Mutual had acted lawfully in terminating Mr Moyo’s contract,” wrote Old Mutual.

On his claim for loss of dignity caused by the insulting remarks made when he was fired, the court also found no evidence to support this.

With this case thrown out, Moyo is now waiting to hear if he won or lost his application to have Old Mutual directors declared delinquent.

He wants them to serve a jail term for contempt of court since the company blocked his temporary reinstatement when the Johannesburg High Court ordered it to do so in July 2019.

Fin24 reached out to Moyo’s lawyer, but he had not responded at the time of publication. – Fin24

Article Source: The Chronicle

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