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News Article : Bonitas in new hands
Category: Healthcare Insurance : Medical Schemes
Author:Aleksandra Serwa
Email:[email protected]
Posted:18 Sep 2010

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Costs awarded on a punitive basis

The High Court yesterday divested the Board of Bonitas of their powers as trustees following a counter-application by the Council for Medical Schemes (CMS) to an application by the scheme interdicting the CMS from instituting proceedings to remove the Board for not being fit and proper.

The South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg yesterday divested the Board of Trustees of Bonitas Medical Fund (Bonitas) of their powers as trustees following a counter-application by regulator the Council for Medical Schemes (CMS) to an application by the medical scheme interdicting the CMS from instituting proceedings to remove the Board for not being fit and proper.

The acting Principal Officer of the scheme, Gerhard van Emmenis, unsuccessfully attempted to intervene in the court proceedings but the court dismissed his application and awarded costs on a punitive basis against him.

The governance of the second-largest open scheme in South Africa now rests with the acting Principal Officer and Compliance Officer Joseph Maluleke, both of whom are required to report to the CMS on a weekly basis.

They are also required to govern the scheme in consultation with the CMS.

Bonitas is to hold a special general meeting by no later than 6 December 2010 to elect a new Board of Trustees.

The court order obviates the need for the CMS to pursue the curatorship as it effectively achieves what the curatorship sought to achieve.

“This goes a long way in demonstrating our resolve to ensure proper governance of schemes in order to ensure the protection of beneficiaries and compliance with the Medical Schemes Act,” said Registrar of Medical Schemes Dr Monwabisi Gantsho.

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