Disgruntled depositors of the Golden Key credit card company will have to wait until the court decides whether or not to hand over the Rs. 60 million worth of jewellery recently recovered by the Police to the committee appointed to oversee the repayments.
By Uditha Jayasinghe
According to Prof. Lakshman R. Watawala, who is part of the three-member Committee of Charted Accountants (CCA) that was appointed by the Supreme Court to oversee the payments, it is up to the same entity to release the funds.
“We are waiting to see what the court will tell us. At the moment there is no indication of what the decision will be.”
He also remarked that the sale of the Golden Key Hospital tagged for a possible Rs.1.2 billion is also still under negotiation, with little indication of when it can be wrapped up.
The sale, which was initially to be finalised earlier this year, has since dragged along with the CAA finding it challenging to find a buyer willing to meet the high amount.
The CCA were tasked with examining the assets and liabilities of the Golden Key Credit Card Company and prepare a scheme for the refund of security deposits of cardholders.
The Committee also suggested that the funds for the repayment should be found by obtaining Rs. 110 million from the personal funds of Lalith Kotelawala and his wife, Rs. 240 million from Ceylinco Consolidated Accounts and the rest by selling the assets of the Ceylinco Company. This now includes the Golden Key Hospital as well as the other holdings specified in the report to the Supreme Court.
The first stage refund of deposits were either 75% of the security deposit balances as per The Golden Key Credit Card Company, IMAS computer system as at 31 December 2008 or Rs. 100,000, whichever is lower.
The first instalment of Golden Key security deposit repayments worth Rs.351 million to 3,863 cardholders commenced mid-December with 200 cheques being dispatched by registered post and was concluded within the stipulated timeframe of a week.