PARLIAMENT, January December 25 – The African National Congress (ANC) study group on public enterprises said Thursday’s court judgement declaring Brian Molefe’s reinstatement as chief executive of South Africa’s state-owned power utility Eskom, illegal validates the current parliamentary inquiry into governance failures at the electricity generator and distributor.
“We are vindicated by this ruling as the ANC has always maintained that the decision to reappoint Mr Molefe was reckless and not in the interest of public confidence in our power utility,” a statement from the party said.
“Our view has always been that Mr Molefe had resigned from Eskom though he later claimed otherwise.”
The high court in Pretoria also ordered Molefe to pay back the money he received, saying he was not entitled to any pension benefits from Eskom.
The court ruled that Molefe must pay back every cent advanced to him from the pension fund, in the next 10 days.
Molefe has already received R11 million from the R30 million pension payout.
“We maintained that Mr Molefe therefore did not qualify for a pension fund pay out from Eskom because he was a contract employee,” the ANC study group said.
Molefe left Eskom under a cloud in late 2016 after he was implicated in then Public Protector Thuli Madonsela’s State of Capture report about the abuse of public funds to benefit politically connected individuals.
A parliamentary inquiry into governance at the utility was instituted last year by the legislature’s public enterprises portfolio committee and has heard damning evidence of the alleged looting of state resources. This includes millions of rands having been given to businesses linked to the influential Gupta family.
– African News Agency (ANA)