JOHANNESBURG - Public Enterprises Minister, Lynn Brown on Friday held a special media briefing to introduce two of the newly appointed Eskom board members
Brown said the appointment of the board in three phases was a pragmatic response to what she called the "well publicised challenges" that the power utility has been facing.
In December the new board was formally appointed for the next three years subject to annual renewable internal and external evaluations. Brown said that in the coming months, more new members with "appropriate expertise" from the business sector will join the board.
The new board comprises of current interim chairperson Zethembe Khoza and interim members Pat Naidoo, Giovanni Leonardi, Pulane Molokwane, Simphiwe Dingaan, Banothile Makhubela, Sathiaseelan Gounden, with the addition of the two new members, Prof. Malegapuru Makgoba and Prof. Tshepo Mongalo
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Brown cautioned the newly appointed Eskom board members of public scrutiny, noting that they would be susceptible to suspicion, "serving as board members in the presently contested political and business environment is not for softies," Brown said.
"Who you chose to associate with is inconsequential - they call it lobbying. Y ou must be careful who you do play golf with, because it will be used as evidence against you," Brown warned.
Brown called for the new Eskom board to engage in appointing a new CEO as a matter of urgency, "please start the process as a matter of priority".
"By the time we convene Eskom's regular annual general meeting in June 2018, we will have insured that investigative and disciplinary processes into alleged maleficence involving some of Eskom's senior executives have been completed and the company will be fully equipped to execute its mandate under a new chairperson."
Brown said that rebuilding systems of government and ethics was an essential part of building up the board reputation and restore investor confidence. Asked if the appointed board members were the best brains she could find, Brown was confident that they were, "yes I do believe that these are the best brains that we could find."
Brown also responded to reports that The Helen Suzman Foundation was leading a lawsuit against herself, President Jacob Zuma and members of his cabinet. The foundation revealed that the civil claim aims to recover billions of rands it says was stolen from Eskom. Brown announced that she had yet to receive any legal documentation pertaining to the reported lawsuit.
- BUSINESS REPORT ONLINE