South Africa's Old Mutual has sacked its chief executive Peter Moyo, a month after suspending him due to a conflict of interest.
The board gave Moyo a "notice of termination of employment" and will "shortly" start the process to find his replacement, the insurer said in a statement. Chief operations officer Iain Williamson will continue as acting CEO.
The insurer said Moyo's actions since his suspension in May "contravened his fiduciary duties" to Old Mutual.
Following unsuccessful attempts to engage on the terms of separation, the Board has now resolved to give notice of termination of employment"
"Following unsuccessful attempts to engage on the terms of separation, the board has now resolved to give notice of termination of employment," the company said.
The conflict of interest related to ordinary dividend payments made by Moyo's investment firm NMT Capital, in which an Old Mutual subsidiary is the only institutional investor. Old Mutual said two payments made by NMT Capital last year totalling 115 rand, were a breach of its rights as a preference shareholder. The personal benefit to Moyo and his investment company was 30.6m rand, the insurer said.
Following the discovery of the dividend payments Old Mutual's board said "there was a material breakdown in trust and confidence" in Moyo.
Old Mutual said: "These dividends were declared in breach of Old Mutual's rights as preference shareholder, since arrear preference dividends were unpaid at the time and, at the time of the second dividend declaration, the preference share capital was redeemable.
"The preference share capital remains unpaid. Moyo chaired the board meeting of NMT Capital at which the second ordinary dividend of ZAR105 million was declared."
Old Mutual did not get an "acceptable" explanation as to why dividends were declared by NMT Capital while debt was owed to Old Mutual, leading to the "breakdown in trust and confidence" with Moyo.
Old Mutual is listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, as well as in London, Malawi and Namibia. It specialises in Insurance services across Africa.