File image: Eskom logo

State-owned power utility Eskom’s board of directors took a decision yesterday to grant its chief financial officer, Anoj Singh, “special leave pending an investigation”. 
This comes after Eskom reportedly faced a threat from the Development Bank of Southern Africa to recall its R15billion loan if no action was taken against Singh and other Eskom officials responsible for the beleaguered parastatal’s qualified audit opinion. 

The power utility appointed Calib Cassim, a registered chartered accountant, with 15 years of service at Eskom, as the interim chief financial officer. “We would also like to assure all stakeholders that the company is stable as evidenced by the recent financial results, and will continue delivering on its turnaround strategy,” said the utility’s acting chairperson, Zethembe Khoza. 

Singh has been implicated in Gupta leaked e-mails, signed a R1.6bn guarantee with Absa in December 2015 for the Tegeta Resources to pay for the Optimum Mine. Singh said: “The guarantee was issued and subsequently cancelled after it expired.” Eskom said Public Enterprise Minister Lynne Brown had noted the board’s decision.