17 May 2017

South Africa: ANC Orders Brown to Rescind Molefe's Return to Eskom

Photo: EskomSouthAfrica
Eskom Megawatt Park.

The ANC has ordered Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown and the Eskom board to rescind Brian Molefe's return to the power utility as its CEO.

"We met with Lynne Brown and all of us present said 'comrades, that decision must be rescinded'," ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe told News24 on Tuesday.

The party's top six summoned Brown to Luthuli House on Monday.

He said the party warned that the matter was likely to end up in court.

The DA approached the High Court in Pretoria on Monday, asking it to declare Molefe's reinstatement irrational and unlawful.

Earlier, ANC spokesperson Zizi Kodwa said the matter was referred to government to resolve, after ANC officials expressed their discomfort to Brown.

Mantashe said ANN7 was "talking rubbish" when it reported that the statement the party released on Friday was not authorised by ANC structures. The party had said the Eskom board's decision was "reckless" and "unfortunate.

The Gupta family-owned ANN7 quoted unnamed sources and reported that Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa was upset about the Molefe issue.

"It was also mentioned that the officials questioned Kodwa's statement given that Molefe's appointment is a government matter," the broadcaster reported.

Kodwa earlier tweeted: "I feel your pain at this moment, you will never capture the ANC through lies and deception."

Molefe's return to Eskom, following a short stint as an ANC MP was announced on Friday. There had been speculation that President Jacob Zuma wanted him to replace Pravin Gordhan as finance minister. Zuma, however, appointed Malusi Gigaba to the post.

Molefe announced his resignation from Eskom in November 2016, after he was implicated in former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela's State of Capture report. She investigated the allegations of "undue influence" by the Gupta family on Zuma and state-owned entities.

She recommended a judicial commission of inquiry be established to investigate the matter. Zuma wanted the findings of the report reviewed.

The family had been linked to several controversial deals at Eskom. Molefe's return came after Brown rejected the Eskom board's decision to give him a R30m pension payout.


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