Lobby group Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA) recently released a statement in response to the reappointment of Matshela Koko, Eskom head: Power Generation, and Prish Govender, acting Eskom head: Group Capital. It reads as follows:
BLSA has learned, with great shock and utter dismay that Ms Lynne Brown, the Minister of Public Enterprises, has approved the decision to reappoint Mr Matshela Koko to the position of Head: Power Generation and Mr Prish Govender as Acting Head of Group Capital. This decision is similar to the illegal re-appointment of Mr Brian Molefe as Eskom CEO.
It flies in the face of complying with the rule of law, holding executives finally accountable and efforts by business and labour to work with government in restoring confidence in our economy which has suffered serial downgrades.
Mr Koko, who was until now been undergoing a sham internal disciplinary inquiry of serious allegations of failure to declare conflict of interest, has yet to answer satisfactorily to these and claims made against him by the Parliament’s Inquiry into Governance Failures at Eskom.
Not only is his reappointment inappropriate but also diabolical and a snub to millions of South Africans who are victims of the state capture project which has diverted billions of taxpayer’s rands into private pockets.
The decision shows Ms Brown’s poor grasp of governance, Eskom’s role in the economy and the potential contagion it has on the rest of the economy. She continues with absolute impunity to ensure that State Owned Enterprises (SOEs) under her control are still systematically saddled with hurriedly promoted, usually untested, and largely incompetent and often corrupt ‘cadre deployments’ where performance is not even expected.
As well as retaining Mr Zethembe Khoza as chairman of the board of Eskom, by returning both Messrs. Koko & Govender, Ms Brown has failed to meet the country’s, Eskom’s investors and regulators expectations of high governance standards, and undermines the two new members of the board she appointed last month.
As BLSA, we reiterate our call for a complete overhaul of the Eskom board members and executives who are captured.
Alongside her testimony in Parliament and her shockingly dismal handling of the many crises facing Eskom, Ms Brown’s continued tenure in this critically important position requires serious and urgent review.
Issued on behalf of: Bonang Mohale, the CEO of BLSA.