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Forex trader to return depositors’ funds 

Bereng Mpaki

THE Central Bank of Lesotho (CBL) says forex trader Hlazvill Consultancy has agreed to pay back depositors’ monies that have been frozen in its account held with a local commercial bank.

In a recent joint statement along with the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Offences (DCEO) and the police, CBL said Hlazvill has been given an opportunity to resolve its issues with its banker FNB Lesotho, and has accepted full responsibility to return the depositors’ monies.

This follows a recent meeting between the three authorities and Hlazvill.

The statement did not however, specify if the money will be returned along with the promised interest or not. It also did not specify when these monies have to be paid.

Last December, the CBL warned the pubic that Hlazvill Forex was trading illegally as it is actually registered as Hlazvill Consultancy and whoever was investing in it was doing so at own risk.

The CBL had further indicated it had not permitted anyone to operate a forex trading business in Lesotho.

The company’s bank account was also frozen as the company was sued last November for taking depositors money in contravention of section 5 of the Financial Institutions Act of 2012.

“Members of the public are informed that the Central Bank of Lesotho together with the Lesotho Mounted Police Service and the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Offences met with Hlazvill Consultancy (Hlazvill Forex Trading) on the 15th of January 2019, and have reached the following conclusions:

“The Central Bank of LESOTHO will give opportunity to Hlazvill Consultancy (Hlazvill Forex Trading) to resolve these issues with FNB Lesotho.

“Hlazvill Consultancy (Hlazvill Forex Trading) has accepted full responsibility to return all monies to depositors,” the joint statement reads.

Operator of Hlazvill Forex Trading, Tumelo Hlazi, was not immediately available to comment as his phones were unavailable.

However, FNB Lesotho has since ditched Mr Hlazi after it ended its relationship with him. The bank said it had given Mr Hlazi his money.

“Pursuant to the joint press statement issued by the Central Bank of Lesotho, Directorate on Corruption and Economic Offences and the Lesotho Mounted Police Service dated 15 January 2019, FNB confirms that it has ended its banking relationship with Mr Hlazi T/A Hlazvill Consultancy effective from 18 January 2019. All funds held in his accounts with us have been released into his custody.

“FNB shall not be held liable for any claims whatsoever pertaining to Hlazi T/A Hlazvill Consultancy.”

Last month, the CBL warned the public against investing money in companies which ask people to invest in forex trading and promise interests as high as 50 percent of the invested amount.

“It has come to the attention of CBL, DCEO and the police that there are entities which are taking people’s monies with the promise that they will be returned with interest and that is against the Financial Institutions Act 2012 and the Money Laundering and Proceeds of Crime Act 2008 read with Penal Code Act 2010.

“CBL continues to warn the public through different media platforms to avoid investing money with entities which are not registered as financial institutions. The public is urged to demand a trading license of any establishment they wish to invest in before they give out their monies,” the CBL said.

 

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