JOHANNESBURG - Former finance minister Pracin Gordhan was announced as South Africa's new public enterprises minister on Monday, in a late night Cabinet reshuffle by President Cyril Ramaphosa.
Gordhan replaces Lynne Brown, who was on found to have breached the executive ethics code and misled Parliament by denying there were payments made to Gupta-linked firm Trillian Capital Partners by Eskom, Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane has found.
Brown denied that money was paid to Trillian for the Duvha power plant insurance claim and that Eskom never appointed Trillian to negotiate the settlement. The minister said there were no further contracts concluded between the power utility and Trillian. She, however, was later forced to admit that this was incorrect but laid the blame on Eskom officials who she said had lied to her.
On March 30 last year, former president Jacob Zuma fired Gordhan as finance minister and replaced him with Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba in a dramatic midnight Cabinet reshuffle.
Three days before the cabinet reshuffle, Gordhan and his deputy Mcebisi Jonas had to cancel their international investment roadshow to Britain and the United States and return to South Africa immediately, on instruction from Zuma.
The reshuffle came after more than a year of tension between Zuma and Gordhan.
Gordhan and Jonas were cited in an intelligence report that alleged they were plotting against Zuma.
On March 31, Gordhan paid tribute to ordinary South Africans for their support during his tenure at the helm of National Treasury.
"Thank you very much for being here, and for demonstrating this solidarity. We have had a meeting with the staff of the Treasury and we said thank you to them as well. We shared some thoughts with them," Gordhan said at the time.
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- BUSINESS REPORT ONLINE