Goldstone, which is registered in Jersey and listed on the alternative investment market of the London stock exchange, insisted he had resigned – and Schloemann took legal advice.
In his judgment on December 13, Steenkamp said Schloemann had been a credible witness, as had Jurie Wessels, who was the CEO of Goldstone when the geologist was fired after a board meeting in Accra, Ghana.
Wessels testified that the company chairman at the time, Christopher Hall, had asked him to fire Schloemann.
Steenkamp said Hall — “not an impressive witness” — insisted the geologist had resigned. However, he could not explain his note on the meeting agenda saying “Hendrik 6 mths from 1/12” or the fact that Schloemann’s resignation was not recorded in board minutes, company correspondence or a stock exchange announcement.
Meanwhile, in her evidence to the court, current CEO Emma Priestley contradicted the company’s written version of what happened at the Accra board meeting.
“The court is faced with contradictory and irreconcilable versions,” said Steenkamp. “Either Schloemann and Wessels are telling the truth, or Hall and Priestley are. The only certainty is that not all of them are.