The board of South Africa-based Ubuntu Wealth Management has suspended its chief executive, Qhawe Sithole.
In a statement on its Facebook page, the company said Sithole was suspected of involvement in criminal activities in Umhlanga, eThekwini, KwaZulu-Natal on 13 July 2021, and was suspended the following day.
According to local media, he took part in the looting following civil unrest in the country. Among the items he has been accused of stealing are alcohol and a washing machine.
Perhaps the greatest irony is that the word ‘ubuntu‘ means ‘humanity to others’.
Ubuntu WM said: “The board wishes to clarify that the chief executive has been suspended with immediate effect pending the outcome of his case and an independent investigation into the charges that have been brought to him.
“Once the board receives all the facts to his case and have studied the findings, the board will take the recommended disciplinary action against the chief executive (or anyone else) as required, the board will move swiftly to institute such disciplinary action so that the matter will be resolved as soon as possible.
“This remains a matter of utmost concern to the board. The board wishes to assure all stakeholders and the public that this matter is receiving the attention it deserved. However, the board is also at pains to ensure that due process is followed at all times.”
The jailing of former president Jacob Zuma was the trigger for the rioting and looting, which has left carnage on the streets and resulted in 117 deaths, as of the time of writing this article.
According to the BBC, 25,000 soldiers may be deployed to the two provinces worst hit by the unrest – KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, which includes Johannesburg.
It would mark the biggest military deployment on the streets of South Africa since the end of apartheid.
Zuma was given a 15-month custodial sentence for contempt of court.
Ubuntu Wealth Management is not associated, affiliated or connected to a UK-based company with the same name.
The South African firm was founded in 2019, whereas the UK business was set up by a South African individual in 2012 and is an appointed representative of St James’s Place Wealth Management.