South African IT Billionaire and founder of Ubuntu, Mark Shuttleworth, has won his court battle against the South African Reserve Bank (Sarb). Shuttleworth has been awarded R250m by the court of appeal.
The court battle began when Shuttleworth attempted to take R2.5 billion of his funds overseas. According to Shuttleworth, he emigrated in order to free up funds to invest outside South Africa. He claimed that he emigrated due to the system of exchange control in South Africa, which he asserted was severely restrictive and rendered investments outside our borders prohibitive. That claim was contested by Sarb.
Sarb taxed Shuttleworth 10 percent as an exit tax of the funds. Shuttleworth protested and claimed that the SARB regulation that stipulated taxation was allowed was not approved by national legislation. The 10 percent tax added up to a staggering R250m, which has now been awarded back to Shuttleworth; however, the Supreme Court of Appeal has ordered Sarb to pay interest on that amount at 15.5 percent per annum from April 2012.