Independent Online

Sunday, December 10, 2023

View 0 recent articles pushed to you.Like us on FacebookFollow us on TwitterView weather by location

Andre de Ruyter says cartels operated with impunity at Eskom

File - Electricity pylons near Arnot Power Station's cooling towers, east of Middelburg in Mpumalanga. Picture: Siphiwe Sibeko

File - Electricity pylons near Arnot Power Station's cooling towers, east of Middelburg in Mpumalanga. Picture: Siphiwe Sibeko

Published Apr 26, 2023


Cape Town - Former Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter has bemoaned how the board stripped him of his powers and sidelined him, leading him to resign late last year.

De Ruyter also said he was undermined by the board to the point he was not told about meetings except his subordinates.

He also reiterated there were four cartels operating in the coal mines in Mpumalanga and they were fleecing Eskom.

He said members of the cartels appeared to have infiltrated Eskom and were working with some of the people inside.

It appeared the cartels were operating with impunity because they were displaying their fortune on social media.

But once the allegations of their operations and looting at the power utility became public, they stopped posting their activities on social media.

On being sidelined by the board, he said this had pushed him to resign.

“It made life challenging. Meetings were made with my subordinates. I experienced that disempowerment. I think that the executives are the people who should run the company. The board of Eskom exercised overreach,” said De Ruyter.

De Ruyter was answering questions by members of the Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa).

The EFF wanted to know if the “Presidential” cartel, which is one of the four syndicates, was linked to anyone or referred to any person. De Ruyter said the names of the syndicates were given by their members and was not a reference to anyone.

But the depths of corruption at Eskom had been reported to law enforcement agencies.

The recent arrests at Eskom by the SAPS and Hawks showed progress was made in some of the investigations.

He hoped the investigations would uncover other malfeasance cases and lead to more arrests.

He believed the investigations would be able to identify all the role-players.

De Ruyter said he was willing to cooperate with any police investigation into corruption at Eskom.

But Veronica Mente of the EFF wanted to know if the “Presidential” cartel at Eskom was a reference to anyone.

De Ruyter said this was not the name given to the syndicate by its members.

“The name of this cartel is something that, as far as I know, is the name that members of the cartel have come up with. I am not aware it’s got any significance or attached to anybody relating to the president. I think this is the name that they have chosen. Up until recently when these allegations became public, the members of the presidential cartel had a fairly lively presence on social media. They made a number of statements saying ‘thanks to coal we can shower in champagne’. These individuals, it appears, acted with a fair amount of impunity when it came to publicising their activities and what they were up to,” said De Ruyter.

He said the fact members of the cartel stopped posting their lifestyle on social media showed they were warned about exposing themselves.

[email protected]

Current Affairs