NUM in Highveld Region said it was angered and perturbed by the announcement of retrenchments made by Eskom on the eve of the Christmas celebration. Picture: Bhekikhaya Mabaso/ African News Agency (ANA)

Johannesburg - The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) in Highveld Region said on Monday that it was angered and perturbed by the announcement of retrenchments made by Eskom on the eve of the Christmas celebration.

This as Eskom chief executive Phakamani Hadebe said on Sunday that the process to rationalise its top executive structure has been completed, reducing the number of top executives from 21 to nine.

Tshilidzi Mathavha, NUM Highveld regional secretary, said the move by Eskom was well calculated and coordinated while workers were preparing to spend time with their families.

"What is lamentable is the fact that Eskom indicated that it will be advertising the same positions in the near future to fill the same positions that were occupied by the unfortunate retrenched employees. The pressing and fundamental question remains that how can Eskom announce retrenchment of certain positions and later recruit and make appointments of those positions that have been rendered redundant? The fact of the matter is that this approach confirms what we earlier called the purging of black managers at Eskom," Mathavha said.

"The NUM strongly feel that the retrenchment has nothing to do with cost-saving measures but a ploy to replace managers who are deemed not to be in the faction of the Group CEO. We want to give a stern warning to the CEO to stop exercising political power in the utility, the CEO must focus on reducing and stopping the possibility of a load shedding in January 2019."

Mathavha said the NUM believed that it is only devil worshippers who will announce retrenchment on the eve of Christmas. 

African News Agency (ANA)