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Kubayi eyes legal action on fuel deal

Energy
Cape Town - Minister of Energy Mmamoloko Kubayi has taken action against the sale of Strategic Fund Fuel (SFF) reserves worth more than R1.5 billion two years ago.

This is despite an earlier assertion by Kubayi’s predecessor Tina Joemat-Pettersson that this was part of stock rotation and there was no stock sold.

However, Kubayi told MPs yesterday that she was taking legal action on the matter, and said that there was no stock rotation.

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Minister of Energy Mmamoloko Kubayi has taken action against the sale of SFF reserves.Photo: Oupa Mokoena

SFF sold more than 10 million barrels of crude oil in December 2015 despite not getting approval from the National Treasury.

The Auditor-General noted this in his report last year.

Kubayi, who was briefing the portfolio committee on energy, said it was unfortunate that the executives who sold the stock in 2015 were no longer in the SFF. However, she was looking at legal options available to her and could go to court.

Kubayi also dismissed claims by the official opposition that R300 million was unaccounted for on the sale of the stock.

She said SFF has said that there was no missing R300 million as the funds were in the account of the organisation.

She told MPs that the SFF board has submitted a report to her on the sale of strategic oil reserves.

“I can confirm there was a sale of stock. It was not a rotation of stock. It was a sale of stock. That I can confirm. I have written to the SFF to secure the country’s reserves and find consequence management,” said Kubayi.

“What you find there is that the executives there took action outside the board. Those people have left. We have to find what are the legal avenues left,” she said.

Kubayi said the SFF report on the sale of strategic fuel reserves is to strengthen the governance model.

Read also: Decision to rotate 10 million barrels of crude explained

She said the report would be tabled in Parliament in due course, and then made public.

She said the recommendations paid attention to strengthening the governance model of the SFF.

Kubayi said she hoped it was not intentional that this was part of stock rotation as it was claimed last year.

“On the SFF, I hear the concerns and take responsibility and apologise for that. I hope it was not intentional. We are transparent on the matter,” she said.

This followed complaints by the opposition that they were concerned about the sale of the stock in December 2015.

They wanted action on those responsible for this, and for the SFF to retain its stock for the country.

BUSINESS REPORT

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