Saturnia denies Hichilema is director

SATURNIA Regna Pension Trust has come to the defence of UPND president Hakainde Hichilema over the allegations that the opposition leader has shares in the company that has been accused of refusing to pay former BP Zambia pensioners their benefits.

Saturnia Regna Pensions Trust has stated that Mr Hichilema was neither a shareholder nor a trustee of the company and that media reports suggesting that the UPND leader owed former BP Zambia (now Puma Zambia Plc) their pension were not only incorrect but grossly inaccurate.

Saturnia Regna Pension Fund board of trustees chairperson Doreen Kabumba said media reports suggesting that Mr Hichilema was a major shareholder in the company were false.

But a check by the Daily Nation yesterday revealed that Saturnia Regna Pension Trust and Africa Life Financial Services Zambia Limited were one and the same company.

A call placed on +260 977 740 265 listed under the Saturnia Regna Pension Trust Limited, among other numbers, revealed that the fund and Africa Life Financial Services Zambia Limited were the same company.

When the reporter dialled the number +260 977 740 265 listed under Saturnia Regna Pension Trust Limited, a female voice answered: “This is Africa Life Financial Services Zambia Limited.”

And when the reporter said he wanted Saturnia Regna Pension Trust Limited because the mobile number was listed under it, the female voice said: “They are one and the same thing,” and went on to give the reporter a number on which he could easily get in touch with Ms Kabunda, the trustee chairperson of Saturnia.

But Ms Kabunda said Saturnia Regna Pension Trust had never been sued by former BP Zambia, which is now Puma Zambia Plc, workers and was not aware of a legal matter between BP Zambia and its former employees.

“Mr Hakainde Hichilema is neither a shareholder nor a trustee of Saturnia Regna Pension Trust Limited nor is he trustee. The reports that Mr Hichilema has shares in the fund are false and the trust has never been sued by the ex-employees of Puma Zambia Plc although we are aware of the on-going court action in the courts of law between a group of ex-employees of BP Zambia Limited (now Puma Zambia Plc) and their former employer over pension benefits,” Ms Kabunda said.

She explained that Saturnia Regna Pension Trust was a distinctively separate and independent Trust Fund and should never be confused with any private entities or companies that could bare similar names or address.

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