CAPE TOWN - The deputy minister of Pubic Enterprises, Ben Martins will be giving evidence on Wednesday before the parliament's portfolio committee on public enterprises conducting an inquiry on Eskom.
1. Martins has been the member of parliament since 1994.
2. He holds a Master of Law (LLM) degree in International Law from University of Cape Town; a Bachelor of Law (LLB) degree from the University of Natal (now the University of KwaZulu-Natal) and a Post Graduate Diploma in Management Practice (PGD Dip. Man. Prac.) from the University of Cape Town.
3. He served as a Minister of Energy from from June 2012 to July 2013.
4. After President Jacob Zuma's cabinet reshufle, he became the Minister of Transport on July 2013.
5. Martins was a member of the Black Consciousness Movement beginning in the 1970s and he was utilized for his artistic background after having studied at Bill Ainslie's studio and at the Federated Union of Black Artists (FUBA).
6. In addition to his governmental duties, he is a Member of Council of the Robben Island Museum and an Executive Committee Member of the Caversham Centre for writers and artists.
7. He has published poetry anthologies and his art work forms part of the permanent Art Collections of South African galleries, as well as those of private collections nationally and internationally. He's a patron of the Congress of South African Writers (COSAW).
8. Between 1983-1991, he served eight years as a political prisoner on Robben Island and in Johannesburg Prison.
9. In November 2017 the suspended head of legal affairs for Eskom, Suzanne Daniels, testified before a parlimentary committee into state capture that Martins had been present at a meeting where Gupta family associate Salim Essa attempted to interfere in Eskom's affairs. Martin denied this.
10. Late in 2017, the parliament's committee on public enterprises had called to subpoena Martins to provide evidence before the committee. Previously the committee invited him to provide evidence but he later then sent a letter stating his presence and testimony was not necessary.
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