South Africa: Mbalula Fires Prasa Board and CEO - but He May Have Broken the Law

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In his haste to fire the inept board and management that have crippled Prasa under his watch, Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula seems to have cut legislative and legal corners that may undermine the authority of the newly appointed administrator.

Less than a month after expressing his full confidence in the board and the management team, Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula has fired the board and the chief executive officer of the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa), placing the railway operator under business administration. Mbalula, however, seems to have contravened the law and sidelined the mandatory parliamentary process in his haste to remove the utterly inept board and clueless management team.

"The previous board has failed, it failed to answer questions in Parliament in front of me. It failed to do the things it should have done in its own time. It failed to provide information to Parliament... I was there," Mbalula said in a media briefing in Johannesburg on Monday 9 December 2019.

"I have arrived at the conclusion that a more incisive intervention that enables a quick turnaround was required."

Prasa has been limping from crisis to crisis for the past six years, including spending billions buying trains...

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