Johannesburg - The Democratic Alliance (DA) said on Friday it wants a full-scale parliamentary inquiry to probe the circumstances leading to, and the reasoning for, the decision by the Eskom board to reinstate Brian Molefe as chief executive.
DA spokeswoman on public enterprises, Natasha Mazzone, said in a statement that the return of Molefe to Eskom would see the Gupta family reclaim their influence over the power utility, and most likely the country's planned nuclear procurement deal.
"The return of Brian Molefe to Eskom is a monumental disaster for the power utility, which is currently in a dire state of affairs and is surrounded by a swirling cloud of Gupta-linked corruption allegations as a result of Molefe's tenure," Mazzone said.
"As such, the DA will write to the Chair of Chairs, Cederic Frolick, to ask that the Public Enterprises committee launch a full-scale parliamentary inquiry into Eskom."
News broke on Friday morning that Molefe, now an ANC Member of Parliament, would be returning to the power utility on Monday after its board decided to rescind his application for early retirement because it could not agree with him on “a mutually beneficial pension proposal”.
Last month, Brown objected to Eskom’s R30 million pension payout to Molefe after he applied for an early retirement. Molefe has since resigned as member of Parliament after only three months on the ANC benches.
At Parliament, he earned just more that R100 000 a month as an MP whereas he was earning R792 000 monthly at Eskom, excluding bonuses. Molefe left Eskom under a cloud following the release of the Public Protector’s report into state capture late last year.
The report raised questions about his proximity to members of the Gupta family whose company, Tegeta Exploration and Resources, is a supplier of coal to Eskom. Molefe then resigned “in the interest of good corporate governance”.
"It was clear in the Public Protector’s damning State of Capture Report that Molefe was seriously compromised in his position at Eskom. He, himself, on leaving Eskom cited the interests of corporate good governance as requiring him to leave," Mazzone said.
"Importantly, the criminal charges that I laid against Molefe still stand and I trust are being actively investigated by the South African Police Service." Mazzone said South Africa deserves to know the truth behind the many scandals currently engulfing Eskom.
"It is imperative that Parliament conducts an inquiry as a matter of urgency to ensure that those who are responsible for abuses are held to account – not least, Brian Molefe," Mazzone said. "Our lawyers have also been instructed to investigate every angle possible to review this ridiculous and irrational decision."
African News Agency