Former chief financial officer at Eskom Anoj Singh. Picture Henk Kruger/African News Agency (ANA) Archives
Former chief financial officer at Eskom Anoj Singh. Picture Henk Kruger/African News Agency (ANA) Archives

LIVE FEED: State Capture Inquiry – January 13, 2021

By Loyiso Sidimba Time of article published Jan 13, 2021

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Johannesburg – The Zondo commission is hearing Eskom-related evidence on Wednesday.

Former Eskom chief financial officer Anoj Singh is expected on the stand.

On Tuesday, the commission heard that Eskom has applied to cross examine former executive Matshela Koko, but he will oppose the power utility's bid to grill him.

Koko, who resumed giving evidence at the inquiry on Tuesday afternoon, has seven calendar days to file his affidavit responding to Eskom’s application, according to commission chairperson Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo.

Justice Zondo said the commission’s legal team would also have seven calendar days to indicate whether it intended opposing Eskom’s application.

WATCH FEED HERE

Koko’s lawyer, Frans Barrie SC, informed the commission that his client would oppose Eskom’s application for various reasons, but did not elaborate.

Evidence leader Pule Seleka SC assured Justice Zondo that there was documentation the commission has been exchanging with Koko’s lawyers.

Seleka’s assurances follow concerns raised earlier this week by Justice Zondo ahead of Koko’s testimony, and the failure to send notices to the individuals he was scheduled to implicate in his evidence.

Seleka told Justice Zondo the commission’s legal team complied with the requirement to notify the implicated parties, if not in full then at least in part, as Koko has previously testified at the commission.

Barrie complained that Seleka sent Koko’s legal team a letter with a “particularly objectionable tone” on December 22.

Seleka’s response followed a December 2 letter from Koko’s lawyers raising various issues and Barrie yesterday demanded to know whether Justice Zondo was aware of it.

In the letter, Koko’s lawyers were handing the commission information on corruption, irregularity and malfeasance at Eskom which it had asked to be made available to them.

Barrie said Koko’s legal team assumed it carried Justice Zondo’s authority.

However, the country’s second most senior judge said the response was that of the commission’s legal team, and not necessarily his.

According to Barrie, the commission is refusing to investigate corruption, irregularity and malfeasance at Eskom, including allegations made by Koko that mining giant Glencore received preferential treatment from the power utility.

Other allegations that Koko wanted the commission to probe include Eskom supplier Just Coal’s bribery of officials and corruption, which he said one of its directors admitted publicly at a parliamentary inquiry, and the Medupi and Kusile power stations’ contracts.

”I need to have a meeting with members of the legal team and the secretary of the commission,” said Justice Zondo.

He promised to look at correspondence between Koko’s legal team and the commission, to get briefed fully about where everything is.

Justice Zondo said commission secretary Professor Itumeleng Mosala did not appear to have done much about the Promotion of Access to Information Act (PAIA) request from Koko’s lawyers.

He undertook to find time before the end of this week to have a meeting, so that he could be briefed fully on what the challenges were about the requests by Koko’s legal team

”I would like this matter to be settled as soon as possible,” Justice Zondo said.

Barrie complained that Seleka told Koko’s lawyers that the commission did not have the time nor the capacity to investigate the Kusile and Medupi matters.

Koko also demanded that the commission investigate the matter involving Japanese company Sumitomo, which erstwhile Eskom chairperson Zola Tsotsi wanted to unlawfully pay R69 million to buy transformers.

Political Bureau

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