PHC Statement Re: The death of Mr. Blaise Mokwe

PHC is shocked and appalled by the recent death of Mr. Blaise Mokwe and extends its heartfelt and sincere condolences to Mr. Mokwe’s family at this incredibly sad and difficult time.

Published: March 1, 2021

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March 1, 2021: Plantations et Huileries du Congo (PHC) is shocked and appalled by the recent death of Mr. Blaise Mokwe and extends its heartfelt and sincere condolences to Mr. Mokwe’s family at this incredibly sad and difficult time.

The Company is cooperating fully with the police and other authorities in Lokutu as they investigate the circumstances surrounding Mr. Mokwe’s death, and allegations that it was the result of injuries caused by staff working for a security subcontractor to PHC. The Company has suspended those alleged to be involved in this incident with immediate effect, pending the results of the investigation.

PHC hopes that a clear picture of events surrounding Mr. Mokwe’s death are quickly established, and that anyone responsible is brought to justice. The Company fully supports the ongoing investigations in Lokutu.

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Plantations et Huileries du Congo (PHC) is a palm oil company based and operating in the Democratic Republic of the Congo

PHC is majority owned and legally controlled by Feronia KNM, a Belgian company, which acquired 76.17% of its shares from Feronia Inc. as part of a restructuring process surrounding Feronia Inc.’s bankruptcy in November 2020.

Feronia KNM is committed to securing PHC’s future for the long term, and building PHC into a sustainable, socially responsible, and transparent business which benefits all of its stakeholders. However, despite Feronia KNM being the majority owner of PHC and appointing new PHC Board members, it is currently being prevented from exercising its management and operational rights by Mr. Kalaa Mpinga, and a Management team led by Mrs. Monique Gieskes, a convicted criminal, in collusion with the current PHC Board Chairman, Mr. George Busey. The current pretended management team has no legal mandate to manage or control the business and is subject to minimal oversight or scrutiny.

Feronia KNM believes that the current situation is detrimental to the long-term survival of PHC and is likely to have a negative impact on PHC’s many stakeholders, including communities and employees in the DRC, and various legal contracts and agreements surrounding the restructuring of the business, including those entered into with various equity and debt stakeholders.

As the legal majority shareholder of PHC, Feronia KNM will continue to enforce its legitimate rights over the control and management of PHC, to move forward in delivering on its commitment to PHC and all of its stakeholders.