Reacting to media reports that Saturnia Regna Pension Trust Fund has failed to pay the BP Zambia ex-employees their retirement benefits and that Mr. Hichilema was a major stakeholder in the Trust Fund, Board of Trustees Chairperson Doreen Kabunda said the reports are false.
This also comes in the wake of reports that a group of ex BP workers are planning to camp at Mr Hichilema’s private estate to push for the payment of their pension arrears.
But Mrs. Kabunda explained that the Trust Fund has never been sued by any ex-employees of Puma Energy Plc which is formerly BP Plc.
She however said that the Pension Fund is aware of the ongoing action in the Courts of law between a group of ex-employees of BP Plc and their former employer over Pension Benefits.
In a statement, Ms. Kabunda stated the Trust Fund is not and has never been a party of this court action.
She added that Saturnia Trust Fund is a distinctively separate and independent Trust Fund and should not be confused with any private entities or companies that may bear similar name or address.
And Mrs. Kabunda also clarified that Saturnia has no share capital because it is a registered multi-employer Trust Fund.
And UPND Secretary General Stephen Kakuta has denied that Mr Hichilema is involved in the running of Saturnia Regna Pension Fund.
“We can categorically state that Mr. Hakainde Hichilema does not own, nor is he a trustee of, Saturnia Regna Pension Fund, as has been reported by various media outlets including ZNBC, the Daily Mail and the Daily Nation,” he said.
“He has nothing to do with the fund and we find it offensive that individuals appear to be exploiting this case for political advantage in a desperate attempt to divert attention away from the PF’s poor track record in office.”
“Furthermore, we understand that the trustees of the fund itself will be issuing a statement in due course to clarify their own position. The public media that reported this story without checking their facts must remember it is their duty to be non-partisan in their reporting,” Mr Kakuta advised.
He said he is saddened that Mr Hichilema’s opponents would rather talk rumour and gossip than policies and plans and suggest that the PF returns its focus to the billions of kwacha government currently owes unpaid Zambian pensioners as a matter of urgency.