Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown. File photo: ANA

Parliament - Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown on Wednesday, told a parliamentary inquiry she was convinced that former Eskom CEO Brian Molefe had resigned and that his early retirement package was not only irregular but possibly contrived after his departure form the company. 

Brown told the public enterprises committee conducting the probe that she believed Molefe's departure from the company was a resignation, until she saw newspaper reports in April this year, that he had received a R30 million pension payout.

"I was surprised to discover that the board had concluded an agreement with Molefe for an early retirement, but did not consider it to be irregular at that point," she said in a prepared statement to the committee.

"Subsequent events have persuaded me that the 'early retirement agreement' was not only irregular but possibly an ex post facto fabrication."

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The minister noted that when Molefe announced that he was leaving Eskom in late 2016, in the wake of former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela's report on state capture, she issued a statement saying she was saddened by his "resignation".

It was issued after a meeting with Molefe where she used the same term. He never corrected her, she said.

"Mr Molefe did not correct or challenge this terminology."

Molefe was grilled on the subject when he appeared before the inquiry on Tuesday. He resisted all suggestions that his announcement that he was leaving Eskom a year ago, it read like a resignation.

Molefe said his interpretation was irrelevant and so were those of Members of Parliament, as the matter was before the courts.