South Africa’s Public Enterprises Minister, Lynne Brown, has directed the Eskom board to rescind the reappointment of the utility’s CEO, Brian Molefe.
Addressing members of the media at a conference in Cape Town today, Brown said: “We met with the Eskom board today,” she said at a media conference in Cape Town. “Collectively, looking at all the facts… I directed Eskom to rescind the decision to reappoint Mr Molefe.”
News24 reported that Brown has asked the Eskom board to provide her with two names from the Eskom executive to become acting chief executive. She will announce who that acting CEO will be within 48 hours’ time, she said.
According to media, Brown’s request follows an earlier announcement by the inter-ministerial committee during a live television broadcast.
“It will be in best interests in government, Eskom and the country that the Minister of Public Enterprises directs the board to rescind the re-appointment of Mr Molefe,” said inter-ministerial committee convenor Justice Minister Michael Masutha on Wednesday in Cape Town.
News24 reported: “The decision by the Eskom board to grant Molefe early retirement and then the decision to reappoint him were two mistakes that could have been prevented, the committee found.”
Masutha said: “Both mistakes could have corrected administratively and not by the board reinstating Mr Molefe.”
According to News24, the inter-ministerial committee was reinstated by President Jacob Zuma in May and consists of Masutha, Public Enterprises Minister Lynne, Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba and Energy Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi.
It was tasked with investigating Molefe’s return to Eskom, after Brown agreed to the Eskom board’s decision to reinstate him in May.
Brown said earlier on Wednesday that the committee “had several engagements” and have reached a consensus on the matter.
Molefe told media on Tuesday that he was not worried about his fate as chief executive. “Whatever happens, happens,” he said.
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