Sri Lanka Mackwoods Chairman responds to SEC’s directive

July 23, 2016 (LBO) – Chairman of Mackwoods Plantations Pvt Ltd, Dr Chrishantha Nonis, says the sale of 60.8 percent shares of Agalawatte Plantations PLC was carried out with due authorization and instructions being issued to the stock broker.

On 14th of July, Browns Power Holdings (Private) Limited purchased 15,200,000 ordinary shares, or 60.3 percent, of Agalawatte Plantations PLC (AGAL.N.0000) on the Colombo Stock Exchange from Mackwood Plantations for 304 million rupees.

Chris Nonis, in a statement, says the action by the SEC in issuing a directive on a complaint made by non-shareholders, without making any formal inquiries into the matter, is highly questionable.

The sale of Agalawatte shares was completed on 14th July 2016 and six days after the share transaction was concluded, the SEC on 20th July issued a directive stating that shareholder approval had not been obtained.

The stock broking firm has informed the SEC that the contents in the directive are incorrect in that the instructions received were not only from Chris Nonis but also from Shelendra Ranaweera and Lalith Fonseka, which information was available to the SEC.

The letter further states that the SEC should not interfere with the internal affairs of Mackwoods Plantations (Private) Ltd, and has requested that the SEC withdraw its allegations.

The SEC in the directive stated that Nirmalie Samaratunga and M. J. Varma had complained to the SEC that 60.8 percent of the shares in Agalawatte Plantations PLC held by Mackwoods Plantations Private Limited had been sold by Dr. Chrishantha Nonis, without due authorisation and without the approval of the shareholders of Mackwoods Plantations Private Limited.

The SEC called for a withholding of sales proceeds until the matter is examined.