Just as the Treasury, the Government Employees Pension Fund (GEPF) and the Public Investment Corporation (PIC) had begun to open the door to greater transparency of how this enormous pot of money is invested, they have shut it again. The move to transparency seemed unstoppable. Several dubious investments in unlisted entities, pressure from ailing state-owned enterprises for "investments" and loans, and a close call with state capture — when the Treasury veered dangerously near to falling into the hands of looters — had made the lesson amply clear: the only way to protect savings of public servants and pensioners is public disclosure of investment decisions, especially those in the unlisted space. For decades those at the helm of the PIC — which acts as the asset manager of the GEPF and other government social funds — have been subject to lobbying from the politically connected for loans and investments in deals dressed up as good for empowerment and transformation but not necessari...

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