PARLIAMENT - President Cyril Ramaphosa on Wednesday told Members of Parliament (MPs) he recused himself from the process of appointing Sifiso Dabengwa to the board of Eskom, South Africa's embattled power utility, because of his past relationship with the businessman.
"When the name of Mr Dabengwa was brought to be appointed as a director, I immediately said I know him and I would like to recuse myself from being part of the decision that would lead to the appointment of Mr Dabengwa," Ramaphosa said in his first question and answer session in the National Assembly since being appointed President in February.
"I decided that I should recuse myself to avoid and not hide the fact that I know him, to avoid a situation where I could be accused of a conflictual relationship."
Ramaphosa was responding to a question from the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), who have criticised Dabengwa's appointment -- pointing to the appointment to South African Airways of Dudu Myeni, a close ally of former president Jacob Zuma. Myeni was named in a parliamentary inquiry as having interfered in Eskom, allegedly to do the bidding of Zuma and his friends.