Deputy minister to appear before Eskom inquiry next week


PARLIAMENT, January 26 – Deputy Public Enterprises Minister Ben Martins will appear before the parliamentary inquiry into South Africa’s power utility Eskom when it resumes next week.

“Next week the inquiry will continue, the committee will receive evidence from … Mr Ben Martins and former Prasa (Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa) CEO Mr Lucky Montana,” the public enterprises portfolio committee which is conducting the probe said.

Martins last year vehemently denied allegations from Eskom’s former head of legal Suzanne Daniels that he was present at a meeting with a member of the Gupta family at the centre of allegations of state capture at the utility and President Jacob Zuma’s son Duduzane.

Daniels told the inquiry that Ajay Gupta signalled at the meeting that he would manipulate the timing of the court case into the illegal pension payout to disgraced former Eskom CEO Brian Molefe to suit the faction of the ruling ANC loyal to Zuma.

The committee this week heard testimony from Eskom executive Matshela Koko and former chief financial officer Anoj Singh, who resigned on Monday.

Both denied illicit dealings with the Gupta family, who are alleged to have raked in billions from contracts facilitated by top officials at state-owned enterprises.

– African News Agency (ANA)