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MPs hear of climate of mistrust during Zola Tsotsi’s tenure at Eskom

Tsholofelo Molefe appears to have been a thorn in the side of Zola Tsotsi and Collin Matjila because she took issue with procurement processes being flouted.

Former Eskom's finance director Tsholofelo Molefe. Picture: Youtube.com

CAPE TOWN - Eskom’s former finance director has described a climate of mistrust between executives and the board during Zola Tsotsi’s tenure as chairperson.

Tsholofelo Molefe, one of four senior officials suspended by Tsotsi’s board in March 2015, testified in a parliamentary inquiry on Wednesday.

She left the parastatal after negotiating a settlement. But Molefe believes she was sanctioned for resisting deals that would benefit Gupta-linked companies.

Molefe appears to have been a thorn in the side of Tsotsi and the parastatal’s former acting CEO Collin Matjila because she took issue with procurement processes being flouted.

She told Parliament’s Public Enterprises Portfolio Committee that Matjila pushed her to sign an agreement with Regiments Capital for advisory services, but she refused to bow to pressure.

“He then threatened me, saying he’s going to bring a driver so that I can sign the agreement. I said I will do no such, he asked me to put it in writing and give my reasons as to why I would not sign the agreement.”

Two witnesses have told the committee that Matjila made sure Eskom entered into an R43 million deal with the New Age newspaper even though the parastatal didn’t have a budget for it.

With regards to Tsotsi, Molefe told lawmakers that his handling of certain procurement issues showed disregard for proper process.

She has called the period leading up to the suspension of four senior executives “toxic”, describing the tense climate between the board and executives.

Molefe confirmed that Matjila was not the first choice for the position of acting CEO and that employees thought another executive, Steve Lennon, would get the job.

Leaked emails known as the GuptaLeaks show Matjila was appointed after his CV was sent to the Guptas and President Jacob Zuma’s son, Duduzane.

WATCH: Parly committee questions Eskom’s corporate governance

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)

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