Businessman Oei Hong Leong has spent around $1.2 million to snap up nearly 6.4 million Raffles Education shares from the open market.

He now holds a total stake of just over 193 million shares, or 14% of the company, up from 13.53% previously, according to an April 30 notice that was filed late in the evening of Saturday, May 1.

Presumably, Oei’s buying was behind the 21.95% surge in Raffles Education’s share price on April 30, which closed at 20 cents. 

SEE:Raffles Education receives legal letter from Oei Hong Leong

The surge triggered a query from the Singapore Exchange and within hours, the company replied that it wasn’t aware of any previously undisclosed information that might have caused the unusual trading activity. 

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Oei is in a multi-year dispute with Raffles Education’s chairman and CEO Chew Hua Seng, who has a total direct and deemed interest of around 32%

On April 23, the company received an EGM requisition notice from Oei, who is seeking to oust Chew, alleging “impropriety” over a placement exercise and also real estate transactions in China. 

In its April 24 filing, Raffles Education notes that Oei has made “broadly similar allegations” previously, and that the company’s board had already “addressed such allegations in previous correspondences” with Oei.

“The company is taking legal advice on the contents of the Notice of Requisition and will make further announcements as and when necessary.”